Security Business

MAR 2014

Find news and information for the executive corporate security director, CSO, facility manager and assets protection manager on issues of policy, products, incidents, risk management, threat assessments and preparedness.

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f you are moving into a new country, you better speak the language. When A3 Communications of Irmo, S.C., expanded into new territory, that language was IP. A3, notes company President Brian Thomas, is a relative newcomer to the security busi- ness; however, it has deep roots in computer systems. The company comes to the security marketplace with a full complement of Cisco Certified Network Engineers and extensive knowledge in computers and computer net- working. This year, A3 ranks tied for #4 in the Fast50, having jumped a more than a dozen places from last year. Having a handle on IP, starting with VoIP, made the transition to IP-based security much easier; and easy — as in easy to live with — is another key component of A3's success. "We try to create a fun work environment," Thomas says. "We are entrepreneurial. We all are on the same ship, going the same direction." This benefits the company in several ways. Nobody is moaning when it comes time to burn the midnight oil to finish up a big project. And customers appreciate the extra effort and referrals follow; in fact, being easy on their customers is one of the keystones for A3's corporate culture. "Not everything is a change order," Thomas says. "If it is something that can be done simply, we take care of the customer." Company Roots When Brian's dad, F. Joseph Thomas, started A3 in 1990, the focus was totally on software development — they did software for gov- ernment agencies and eventually migrated into hardware sales, selling PCs all over the Southeastern U.S. Eventually, they progressed with the market into IT services, networking and network infrastructure. This was about the time VoIP (voice over IP) came to the forefront. Along with VoIP, they offered clients audio- visual solutions and that was followed by sur- veillance and CCTV. Joe named his son Brian as A3's President in 54 | SD&I | March 2014 A3 migrates from IT to security by leveraging its IP skills Speaking IP Opens Doors By Curt Harler SD&I Fast50 Rank #4 (tie) I Brian Thomas has transformed A3 Communications into a communications, security and IT service provider for enter- prise and education end-users. SDI_54-59_0314 Fast50 A3.indd 54 3/5/14 1:39 PM

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