Powering Ahead

Home Integration Firm ESC Leads Aspens Luxury Market
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Nestled into the picture-perfect resort paradise of Colorados Snowmass and Buttermilk Mountains, Electronic Systems Consultants is an top-shelf residential systems design and integration company with an eye on the future.

Founded in 1988, ESC, based in Aspen, Colorado, continues to grow its client-base across the nation. Strong relationships with architects and contractors are helping drive growth, but it is ESCs reputation for excellence in the luxury market and a modular business strategy that differentiate it from most CEDIA-type firms.

This unique approach unites the gamut of ESC operations-from marketing to sales to product quality control. ESCs Jim Raras believes the efficiency sustained from this modular approach lets it offer specialized, services-intensive solutions, not just black boxes. Additionally, ESC selects limited-distribution product brands such as Sonances Visual Architect for its suite of integrated solutions for home AV, lighting and climate control, HVAC, security management as well as outdoor systems. Partnering with a brand like the Visual Performance Series also reflects ESCs emphasis on dcor-conscious lines.

Anson Fogel, ESCs chief operating and technology officer, said that what further separates his company from industry peers are ESCs best-in-class core competencies. He explains how the ESC team continually refines an operational solidity that allows it to tackle dozens of large-scale projects without the micromanagement that usually cripples a business. Weve grown and continue to grow because of our belief in a self-sustaining process, he said.

A proprietary software system that seamlessly links with inventory, project notes, and auto-CAD contribute to the airtight management. Furthermore, a fully outfitted quality control and testing facility right on the ESC property employs the same modular, machinated processes that govern the management structure.

PROVIDING HIGH-VALUE SOLUTIONS

As the premier provider of high-end services in the mountain region, ESC is well-positioned to target new sales opportunities, too. Remote system and subsytem management via IP control appears to be a high-growth area, according to David Brown, lead technician with ESC. The popularity of IP-control for home AV systems is both real and welcome for retrofit and new build construction. Virtually every new system we install includes IP, he said.

Besides keeping the client current with new technology, this type of remote management adds even more value and convenience. For ESC, this is what it means to be a premium service providermeeting then exceeding the clients expectations.

Another way to add value is to personalize the customer care experience. David Daniels, founder and principal at ESC, believes that putting the customer first means, Always being available when questions arise. As a result, ESC is one of the very few dealers in the country to maintain a daily, 24-hour service line. The service is led by manager, Cal Viall, and a team of dedicated client service technicians.

Both Fogel, Daniels, and Viall agree that as technology continues to evolve and broadband makes its way into its essential to tie all the homes electronics and IP-based systems into one control interface that is intuitive, inviting, and supremely simple to use.

THE FUTURE IS GREEN

InPower Systems based in nearby Carbondale, Colorado, is a separate company created and operated by ESC executives. Its recent purchase of Grounded Renewable Energy, a regional solar power company, is a strategic move to meet the rising demand for complete renewable energy solutions. InPower Systems engineers and installs advanced solar power systems on existing and new homes and businesses in the Rocky Mountain West.

According to the company, its one-stop approach allows customers to purchase the best solar power system for their lifestyle. The core of InPowers integrated approach is a set of optimized, pre-engineered systems.
And the timing couldnt be better. According to InPowers research, global energy demand is skyrocketing...a 70 percent increase since 1970. The data also suggest that 2030 global energy consumption will be two-thirds higher than today in a market where fossil fuel supply is projected to be two-thirds more difficult to extract. In turn, producing energy where it is used, at your house, thus increases efficiency immediately by 150 percent.

The areas of focus for InPowers business will be providing Photovoltaics (grid-tied, net-zero-consumption sized photovoltaic systems), geothermal ground source heat pump systems, solar thermal technologies systems, efficiency engineering, and a proprietary energy management system combine to eliminate electricity consumption, utility bills, and provide clean power to the local community.

Increasing energy costs, enticing utility and government rebates for the purchase of solar panels, and general consumer awareness of humanitys impact on the climate have converged to create unprecedented demand for alternative energy solutions, especially solar power, said Fogel, who is also the InPower Systems CEO. Acquiring GRE is a step toward meeting the need for easy-to-buy, easier-to-use installed solar systems throughout Western Colorado and beyond. We are thrilled to incorporate GREs expertise, reputation and longstanding customer relationships with our existing business.

Margot Douaihy is a contributing editor of Residential Systems magazine in New York City.

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