5 Questions with Resideo’s Vice President and General Manager of Global Pro Security, Alice DeBiasio
ESA interviewed Resideo’s Vice President and General Manager of Global Pro Security Alice DeBiasio to discover why she joined the industry, what Resideo’s plans are regarding DIY and MIY (Monitor-it-Yourself) threats, how the company’s recent acquisitions and spin-off from Honeywell will be relevant and what her vision for the future is.
Watch and read below for DeBiasio’s perspective on these topics.
What drew you to the security industry?
I began my career as an aerospace engineer in the defense industry and have always held tremendous respect for the men and women in our armed forces, who protect our freedoms every day.
I bring that same level of respect and admiration to what our industry can do to protect what is most precious to us, our families and loved ones. Every single day we can help save the lives of our customers – there’s nothing more important than that. Some of your readers may have heard this story before, but several years ago one of our children had to undergo multiple operations out-of-state and my husband and I needed to be with her completely, not just in the room, but we had to be completely present and engaged with her, the doctors and nurses.
We knew that because our son and other family members were at home and our security system was professionally monitored, we didn’t have to look at our phones and the alerts that would have been sent if we’d a self-monitored solution. We were able to be there for our daughter at a critical time
Many ESA members see DIY and MIY (Monitor-it-Yourself) as threats that will negatively impact their businesses. How does Resideo plan to equip its customers to confront this?
That’s a great question and we’re hearing it from some of our dealers as well.
There are a number of new competitors with DIY offerings entering into the security space, many with large advertising budgets and consumer media presence, while we’ve also seen many walk away or deprioritize their focus in this market. All of this recent noise and activity has highlighted that as an industry we must own our narrative and engage homeowners differently.
We need to increase our social presence, speak differently about our value and make our offerings more accessible to consumers.
Remember, we offer protection to families, their loved ones and possessions and have been doing so for decades. We all know of a family or friend who has faced a critical life safety event — a fire caused by a candle, a carbon monoxide leak due to an issue with a boiler or furnace, or a break-in during the middle of the night.
The value we provide above a DIY and certainly MIY system, is that we are always there monitoring and responding the moment any of the above situations arise protecting their most prized possessions – their family, their pets, their home.
We do, however, recognize the need to expand security to new customers and new markets. We’ve displayed at ISC West and ESX a platform that we believe will do very well with a new segment of the market, creating new business opportunities for our dealers.
It’s a tower shaped device that would be ideal for, as one example, a recent college graduate who is renting and doesn’t need a whole-home solution. The customer can purchase and set up the system on their own and our professional security dealers can offer monthly monitoring for them. Monitored security is real security. We think this is expanding the market and see it as a growth opportunity for our dealers.
Why the spin-off from Honeywell and how will make the company more nimble and relevant to the pro-installed channel?
Honeywell conducted a portfolio transformation review a few years ago and made the decision to spin off two portions of its business, including Resideo.
On Oct. 29, 2018, Resideo began trading under the ticker REZI on the New York Stock Exchange. I attended the bell-ringing along with several hundred employees from Resideo and many of our security dealers, partners and other invited guests. It was the first day of an exciting new chapter for our Products and Solutions business, primarily focused on the residential space, and ADI Global Distribution, the world’s largest low-voltage contractor distributor in the world.
Being independent allows Resideo to make investment decisions that align with the fast-moving consumer electronics space while also continuing investment in the commercial market, which is very different from what Honeywell was interested in doing.
We’re now organized as a single business and all my peers across other parts of Resideo, including thermostats, air, water, gas water heater and furnace controls, are now sitting in the same room and aligning around our whole-home solution that can also be applied to small business and commercial environments. We are now able to make business decisions faster, not as an industrial company, but as one competing in the rapidly changing home technology space.
We’re able to make strategic investments that make sense for our customers and what homeowners want.
What can you tell us about the recent acquisitions of Buoy Labs, LifeWhere, and technology from Whisker Labs, and how they will impact Resideo dealers/integrators?
We’ve shared our intention to make tuck-in acquisitions like these that help round out what we can offer homeowners. There’s a lot of talk about the “smart home” but our homes today are anything but smart.
A truly smart home would notify you in advance of a catastrophic failure of a water heater or your air conditioning. Your water heater is going to fail at the worst time, and you never get notified. Your air conditioning goes out when it’s 110 degrees, and you get no warning.
We believe there are added monitoring opportunities for our dealers who are interested in these added elements of home protection, beyond just break-ins or fires. You’ll hear more about this in the coming months, but all these acquisitions are going to position Resideo and our thousands of professionals as the experts in home protection. Stay tuned, there’s a lot more to come in this area.
It certainly seems like an exciting time, what is your vision for success in the channel?
I agree that we are at an exciting inflection point in this industry and at Resideo we have a clear vision to ensure we maintain and expand our market leadership position.
We all know that our homes are usually one of our largest investments, a place where families make memories and build their families and futures. Our homes are often a reflection of who we are, they represent our values as families. We talk about the fact that our homes today are frequently the least intelligent of all the places we go in our lives and we have a vision to change that.
We envision a future where our homes anticipate problems, takes appropriate action and connects to a qualified professional to correct the issue. That pro has the appropriate experience and scale, with the expertise to protect the home and our families.
This is what our security dealers do every day and we see exciting new opportunities for additional recurring monthly revenue for our dealers in the future.