M2M Services and Alula Join Forces to Redefine the Future of Smart Security

M2M Services, which provides universal alarm panel communicators, connectivity and interactive services has merged with smart security and Internet of Things (IoT) provider Alula, the companies announced in a joint press release.

Operating under the name M2M Services, the combined entity “will leverage the strengths of both companies,” the announcement says. The merger “marks a significant achievement in the industry, creating a company with unrivaled products and services that cater to the ever-evolving demands of the smart security market and the professionals who serve it,” according to the joint announcement.

The combined companies will be led by Peter Tzvetkov, CEO of M2M Services. Dave Mayne, president of Alula, will lead North America operations and oversee global sales and marketing. Gregg Waldon, CFO of Alula, will manage financial operations for the combined business.

The company will have U.S. headquarters in St. Paul, Minn., and global headquarters in Sofia, Bulgaria.

“This merger represents a strategic move to position ourselves as the premier market leader in the smart security industry,” says Tzvetkov in the joint announcement.

“We are excited about the future and the offerings we’ll provide to both our current and prospective customers, making available unmatched security solutions that provide peace of mind and seamless control over the connected environments they create and monitor,” he says.

The merger “opens up new horizons for Alula as we combine our expertise to set new benchmarks for quality, engineering and innovative security offerings,” says Mayne in the joint announcement. “Together, we are committed to empowering our customers with advanced technologies that redefine the way they protect what matters most.

“As a combined business over 1.25 million rooftops will be actively using our service platform to protect their properties and add convenience to the lives of those residing and working there. We are committed to continued innovation around the connected security market,” he says.

Key highlights of the merger include:

  1. Expanded Product Portfolio: The new business will offer an extensive range of smart security solutions that encompass cutting-edge hardware, services, and cloud-based technologies. Customers will enjoy an even broader array of products tailored to meet their unique security needs.
  2. Enhanced R&D Capabilities: By pooling research and development resources, the new M2M Services will accelerate the pace of innovation, creating new technologies that drive the industry forward and enhance the overall user experience.
  3. Unparalleled Expertise: The new M2M Services brings together a team of industry veterans and seasoned experts from both companies. This combined expertise will enable the company to address market challenges and anticipate future trends effectively.
  4. Customer-Centric Approach: Both M2M and Alula share a common commitment to exceptional customer service. As a merged entity, they will continue to prioritize customer satisfaction, offering responsive support and tailored solutions to meet individual needs.

How the Industry Reacted to the Alula-M2M Merger

Vince Raia, president of EMC Security, has been an Alula customer for years. He’s excited about the partnership with M2M.

“EMC Security introduced IP monitoring to our customers when added to a new technology offered by Russell Vail, founder of IpDatatel,” he says. “That started a more than 10-year relationship that continues today with our support of the Alula product line.

“We are optimistic that, by combining the strengths and operating scale of the two companies, IP Datatel and M2M, we will continue to see the same technology innovation and keen understanding of the customer experience,” says Raia.

Alula “has always paid close attention to input from their customers when implementing or refining their product and service lines,” he says, adding the company “understood there was a strong customer desire to bridge available new technologies with legacy equipment already installed in the home.

“Not every customer wants to rip and replace their systems every few years. We hope that the combined companies will continue to drive innovation that is both forward thinking and backward compatible with legacy systems and continue to listen and react quickly to the needs of their dealer customers,” says Raia.

Kirk MacDowell, president and CEO of MacGuard Security Advisors, sees this move as one that will benefit both companies as well as the security industry as a whole.

“Alula and M2M Services have different offerings which once combined, could yield significant results for both, under one umbrella,” he says. “Over the years, Alula has a bit of an identity crisis. Are they a manufacturer of wireless sensors, Connect Plus control panel, or a platform provider?

“The answer is yes to all three as well as an OEM to some of their competitors, which is not unusual in the manufacturing arena,” says MacDowell.

Alula was established in 2017 with the merger of IPDatatel and Resolution Products. Resolution was known for developing wireless products, wireless translators used by dealers when taking over another manufactured system and a complete line of sensors. IPDatatel was founded as a communication path, utilizing a broadband connection.

“Conventional thinking was that if you combined an Alula intrusion product and platform, dealers would use both,” says MacDowell. “Many dealers continued to use resolution products but found it challenging to come to grips with the connected solution offered by Alula.

Another issue, he says, is that Alula did not offer a hard-wired/wireless panel solution, thus making it difficult for dealers to standardize on the Alula combined solution.

“Some dealers did make the jump and were impressed with the synergy between the Connect Plus product and the back end,” says MacDowell. “However, others were slower to adopt, which was frustrating for Alula.”

M2M Services is a technology company that provides low-cost universal communicators that work on many manufacturers control panels, are easy to install and dealers/integrators like the simplicity, say MacDowell.

“The company is based in Bulgaria, where available engineering resources are more dominant than in the U.S. today,” he says. “M2M has gained ground in the North American market over the past few years and has done a good job of working with central stations in partnership opportunities with dealers.

“Taking the best from Alula, combining the engineering resources from M2M as well as M2M’s worldwide distribution could be a win-win for both companies. It’s all about continued dealer/integrator acceptance. The acceptance begins with leadership and the best chance for success is that the Americas business unit should be led by the U.S.-based team that understands the market and is respected by the dealer community,” says MacDowell.

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