Lessons Learned
Written by Victor Harding
I have been involved in buying and selling security companies in Canada for more than 20 years, and owning and running a brokerage business like Harding Security for the past decade has given me invaluable insight and experience into how fire, guard and integration companies are valued and sold. Here are some insights I have gleaned. I hope many of you might profit from my experience.
Written by Victor Harding
As another year draws to a close, here are some best practices you should take with you into 2019.
Written by Victor Harding
If you read papers on mergers and acquisitions as I do, one statistic pops up all the time.
Written by Victor Harding
I have been quite busy recently doing valuations and closing some deals, which is great. Being so busy also means that I learn things on almost every deal I do. Here are some of my latest tips.
Written by Victor Harding
Recently I feel we are being bombarded by countless articles and presentations on the twin subjects of DIY and the connected home.
Written by Victor Harding
The most common method of valuing small businesses is to use a multiple of earnings or EBITDA.
Written by Victor Harding
In Part One I left off with the dealer or seller having determined that they are financially ready to sell, and at the same time they have determined that this is a good time to sell. With the recent changes to taxation of small businesses, this is even more important today.
Written by Victor Harding
DIY means Do It Yourself and MIY means Monitor It Yourself.
Written by Victor Harding
I thought it might be useful to lay out the issues in the order that I would address them if I was an owner and thinking of selling.
Written by Victor Harding
Trade shows, conferences and magazines are important for obvious reasons. You see suppliers, learn about new equipment, read about the issues in the security industry and you can network with other dealers. But there is another reason to take part in all of this. Most of us spend too many of our working hours just “doing” and don’t spend enough time standing back and thinking about the broader picture.
Written by Victor Harding
Companies can grow organically or by acquisition.
Written by Victor Harding
The residential burglar alarm sector still represents a great opportunity for security dealers but it has to be approached the right way.
Written by Victor Harding
I am often asked by prospective clients, what does a broker actually do? Is it necessary to use a broker to sell your business? How does using a broker help and finally what do they cost?
Written by Victor Harding
Many of these points have been mentioned in previous columns but perhaps they need mentioning again.
Written by Victor Harding
Most owners don’t know very much about the various methods of valuing companies, which is completely understandable because the methods are a profession in itself.
Written by Victor Harding
Over the last three years, I have had the opportunity to examine two sets of two companies, each set of which is located in the same geographical area of the country and offers the same security services.
Written by Victor Harding
In my last column, I talked about buying alarm accounts from a buyer’s perspective. This time I will address some issues to be aware of if you want to buy an integration business.
Written by Victor Harding
Growing organically on the alarm side of the security industry is difficult today.
Written by Victor Harding
In the scheme of things, 20 years is not a long time.
Written by Victor Harding
In reflecting on this past year’s deal activity, it occurs to me that my deals have been held up mostly by two mundane details: a lack of signed monitoring contracts and an inability on the part of the seller to easily fill in what I call the acquisition spreadsheet on their account base.
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Events

ADI Expo
March 12, 2019
ISC West
April 10-12, 2019
Security Canada East
April 24, 2019

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