HISC...when your Pump and Dump Pinkie is on it's last legs with about 5 billion OS and ready for a Reverse Split...visit the company and write a glowing report!!! LOL!!!! All the bagholders are sooooo grateful!!!! And he got all this without taking notes!!!
Posted by: skier321
In reply to: None Date:7/14/2007 2:51:31 PM
Post #of 63471
Good news everyone....I had the fortunate opportunity to visit the HISS office this past Thursday evening. It is a stroke of luck how this all came about.....I talked with Ian on the phone earlier that afternoon and decided to go over and visit Friday a.m.-----but he called me back about 30 minutes later and asked if I could come over that evening because Fred and Brian would both be there and wanted to meet me. Ian explained he would not be there himself as he had a meeting with the local fire and rescue department of which he is a member....but I am telling you this because it was very obvious that these guys were just as excited about me coming over to visit as was I. I want to thank Ian for thinking quickly and getting me over that evening....because Fred was scheduled to fly back out the following morning.
I will be honest with you and tell you I was very busy at work as we were getting this all set up and therefore I had no opportunity to come up with a list of questions. Additionally, I just barely got there at the time we were to meet because of the traffic. But as it turns out I would have never walked in with a written list of questions anyway....not my style.....my main goal was to get a feel for our home office and those in charge and to actually accomplish this in person. What really prompted my call to the office, was Wayne’s post on Wednesday relaying the info from Lynx that shareholders are welcome to visit the HISS office any time.
I’ll tell you right up front, the only notes I took were in my head because I wanted to look our leaders in the eyes and not be looking down writing on a piece of paper. I did the best interviewing I could for myself and everyone here, and tried to come away with as much info as possible.....however I did think of a few things later I forgot to ask about, including whether there could be any type of merger situation down the road.....and I did not get any info on SkyPort or ask about South America. I really don't think they would have been at liberty to discuss these matters anyway.....so, I don't feel guilty at all. Other than that, I think I did well overall.
Here you go:
* Walked right into the office at 5:20 p.m. and Brian and Fred and several employees were sitting at a conference table across the hall.....really neat......everyone very relaxed and I said hi guys...I’m xxxx xxxxxxxx, and I looked right @ Fred and said hi Fred, and then the same thing to Brian and they were laughing because they said I must recognize their faces from pictures and I said exactly....LOL!! They all stood up and shook hands with me and welcomed me to HISS headquarters.
* Then they took me over to Adam Clough’s office for introductions...then Brian , Fred, and myself all sat down in Brian’s office to talk. I sincerely thanked them for staying late to meet with me, and we proceeded to have a very relaxed and informative discussion. I liked our leaders immediately and was just as comfortable talking with them as I am with all of you on the iHub board. Extremely personable and intelligent guys.
*One of the very first things we discussed, was additional ways to keep the line of communication open
with the shareholders......and they are the ones that actually brought up the subject. They truly want to keep us informed.....but as far as PRs, wanted me to understand they are only going to PR significant news.....no fluff if you will. We even talked about the recent PR about the brackets and wiring harnesses.....they were aware that some folks did not think that was the greatest of PRs...including myself......but the interesting thing was that they truly felt that was one of their better press releases because it was intended to demonstrate to the shareholders, management’s firm commitment to cut costs. They didn’t blink an eye and were absolutely sincere and I realized right then and there....that sometimes there is a totally different perspective in the way news is interpreted...depending on which side of the driver’s seat you are on. The wiring harness/modem combination (I think I have that right)....used to be made at the ARCOM plant in China and the metal mounting bracket used to be made in England. They are both now being fabricated locally in the Asheville area .....Brian explained even though Asheville is only a small city.....there are a LOT of tech savvy industries there, and more are moving in all the time, so they wanted to capitalize on the resources that were right there in town, and save money at the same time. They showed me both products....the bracket is interesting because it used to be made of metal and now is fabricated out of high strength, injection molded ABS plastic.....very lightweight and strong and a heck of a lot less in cost per unit than the previous version. Plus they have now eliminated the shipping charges from China and England for these two accessories----which brings up another point....Fred told me for some particular orders.....ARCOM drop ships the order from China.....for example I think this is how they handle the BRAVO orders.....since BRAVO uses their own software. No need to have it come to Asheville and then to the Middle East......the order just goes straight to its destination.....another cost savings.
* Back to shareholder communication.....any shareholder is welcome to visit the HISS office at any time......no appointment is needed....but I did so out of courtesy and I would recommend it because that way you don’t walk in when they are busy trying to get a shipment out. Brian said in the near future they are considering posting a quarterly newsletter on the web site to keep shareholders informed of current happenings which I thought was a great idea.
* They were boxing up a big order that was going to McCrary Trucking in Atlanta, GA when I walked into the office. Looked very professional and I was impressed with the way each unit was neatly packaged in a black foam rubber case for protection during shipping.
* I asked Fred if McCrary would be ordering even more units in the future.......he was confident they would....of course he couldn’t give me numbers or time lines.....but they are very pleased with their CTs and Fred has been down to talk to them, and knows those guys well.
* Fred has been to the Arcom facility in Kansas, but not England or China.
*You all are going to be blown away by this. Fred was talking to Arcom (early on when they were looking for a manufacturer) and wanted to know what the production capacity would be for the Cyber Tracker in one month. They told him they have the capacity to turn out a million units per month. My mouth just dropped open....and I asked Fred to repeat this two more times to me to be sure I heard correctly.
* I talked at length with Fred about the OS and buying back shares. Folks, Fred is just as eager to get the share structure in a more favorable condition as we are and both he and Brian reminded me that the ultimate success for all of us (including them) will be measured in the performance of our stock......they are drop dead serious about this......and are in the same boat with all of us because of the shares they also own. Fred also told me he has got a considerable amount of his own personal funds invested in shares of the company just as we do.......so they are right in the same boat with us folks......and he told me point blank they feel the same pain we are all experiencing presently. I got a good MBA lesson from this guy (Fred)...sure, they want to get the OS down JUST as much as we do...cause he said it would make their life a lot easier....but they are having to put incoming $ into generating more product until the curve changes and they’ve got the extra funds to buy back shares. Not what I wanted to hear, but he looked me right in the eye as he did all during our meeting and told me “I feel your pain, I feel your stress” (same with Brian), and they made sure I knew they want things corrected just as much as we do. I did not ask him if they had been selling a lot of shares recently because I didn’t want to dig into these guys........we were just having a tremendous conversation and things were flowing smoothly.......but I can tell you Fred told me it is very difficult to try and raise funds through share sales with the pps where it is.......so my gut feeling is that they may have been selling some.......but I do not think it is an outright onslaught like the board has feared lately. Make your own judgment here, but that is my personal feeling from my discussion with Fred. He assured me he knows the pain and does not want to lose his $ either...that is why they are working their tails off. Looked me right in the eye and told me that he, Brian, and Ian....and all those at the company......their ultimate payoff from all their efforts, blood, sweat, and tears is when that PPS does what they are striving for.....THAT is when THEY know they have succeeded. THEY are on OUR same page. This was not some fluffy statement Fred was hoping I wanted to hear....it was the truth out of the horse's mouth. Fred did tell me it is still going to take some time to get where we all want to be. I was amazed at this guy’s business background and the experiences he openly shared with me. He is actually very pleased with where the company is on the time line for a startup company. It is just like Monkey has been telling us.....that in this kind of situation it is not uncommon for it to take 3 to 5 years to get really rolling. And remember, we’ve got 2 1/2 years or so under our belt already. Fred actually told me with the many startup situations he has been involved with, particularly in industry situations where money is not even an issue, HISS is right on time if not a little ahead with the progress we have made with our product development and getting it to market. Sitting right there with him, I can tell you this guy is on the up and up and I absolutely have total confidence in him. Fred Wicks knows what he is talking about. They are still using incoming funds to get more product out the door, sales are increasing, they are very confident in what they are doing, and he assured me when they get in the situation where they have the funds to do so, the first thing they want to do is get this share count down.....but we are not there yet. He said he would be buying back shares right this minute if he could.......we are going to get there folks....we’ve got to let this guy do his thing. Fred said everything is coming together nicely as far as our sales funnel, contacts, proposals, leads, and he wanted me to know (I am paraphrasing here) this is our maiden voyage down this path, because we have never been down this road before......and there is no one on the planet that knows exactly how the cards are going to fall. We could get a big order any day or in 2 months or 4 months or next year that would really turn the afterburner on, but no one knows when that kind of situation is coming and could happen at any given time. So to continue.....sales are increasing and they are doing everything they can, working dawn to dusk, and have everything mapped out for success for our company........we’ve just got to let this thing happen. I am absolutely, without a doubt, convinced these guys are the best we could have in charge of our company.....and my visit with them sealed this for me. I have worked with THOUSANDS of people in my business over the years, and my gut is sold with these guys. They are straight talkers, look you right in the eye, and talk with you just as if you were a family member. Folks, this is a whole different ball game when you get in someone’s face like this.....you can’t do it online or over the internet. If you have any doubts or hesitations yourself.....then put your shoes on and go pay these guys a visit. This shareholder is sold.
*They ARE taking salaries now, but sort of on a hit and miss thing as they can. I’ll swear, Brian told me, ....”remember last year when we took shares in lieu of salaries”?--- He told me his only amounted to $9500 .....don’t know if he was talking about his salary for that year or what....maybe that was all his shares were worth (at the time he received them or something).....not sure on this but I am positive he said 9500...whatever that referred to...anyway....he was rolling his eyes and I could sense the honesty in his mannerisms and voice. Did not sound like he had much of an income that year.
* Brian excused himself as he had another engagement and had to leave....but as he stood up to shake my hand and thank me for coming by, he said he wanted to leave me with one thought: “if we don’t make a go of this, how do you think I’ll feel after working dawn to dusk every day...plus....my son Ian is only 24 years old and as a parent I want my son to succeed.” He went on to say anything other than success, would not only affect him as a shareholder, but would affect his family unit. Looked me dead in the eye when he told me this. Thanked him profusely for staying to meet with me and he told me he was just as tickled about me coming by.
* Just to digress a little, and give you a little insight into our CEO and a little humor......I found out he is a licensed pilot (as is my wife).........very health conscious....goes to the gym to “lift weights and ride the bike”, plays golf....said it is a good avenue to spend time with his son if nothing else just for the camaraderie.... used to play basketball, tennis, big time runner...10K races....as I used to do also.......even used to be into boxing.....I mean he used to box.......very sharp, focused, intelligent, personable fellow. We were just really hitting it off here......and he said all this contributed to the foot surgery he had back in December. He laughed and said.....you don’t know the pain until you’re in an airport on a HISS business trip and someone bumps into your foot that has pins in it with one of those airport luggage carts............LMAO!
*My conversation with Fred was like a continuous work in progress.....he knew I was very business savvy from my own personal background....so we were talking fluent business lingo like 2 seasoned veterans....but believe me....he was the teacher......the experiences he shared with me are permanently imbedded in my mind.
* Ian is totally in charge of the Middle East territory...has traveled over there several times and has got a really good rapport with Bravo. Fred says travel expenses are going down.....with this and other similar situations because once we get things going with a company such as this.....most of the follow up and communication can be done over the internet....once the parties get to know each other really well.
*General Georgiou is still interested in the GSM version to be released. I have no idea how many of the cell towers have been rebuilt after the war last summer in Lebanon, but I do feel when the infrastructure is ready.....he will be buying. I mean that is the only way I can interpret the fact that management is still in communication with him.
*Fred said GSM is right on schedule and we should be getting a PR very soon.....re: AT&T he said a lot of companies try to get a lot of technical products approved by them all the time.....and many small companies don’t ever get approved by their network....but he said because of our team’s hard work, excellent product, and knowing the right people......that our situation is very different........we’ve got a very good rapport and are going to get this done. Without making him uncomfortable.....I said...so “Third quarter for sure”.....he nodded affirmatively and again stated that info could be coming just any time now.
* He said the GSM is going to be taking us down a whole different avenue, and they are anticipating it will start opening up a lot of things for us. He said iDen was slated to become obsolete or something like that by 2012 or something, and that companies that are looking to play ball down the road are already starting to look at switching over to GSM.
* The CE (European certification) has already passed muster.....ironically he said the approval for CE is done here in the states.....not Europe.
*Asked Fred if HISS does any cold calls to obtain customers....he said yes. I think it was Adam Clough who went down to Rutherford County to talk to the Sheriff’s Dept (think they had some kind of lead that the department might be interested in a product such as ours).....and after seeing our product, decided to buy units from us.
*Sprint/Nextel and AT&T reps as well as ActSoft cold call as well.....but Fred said it works the other way around just as well.....i.e. people who are searching for a solution contact these resources of their own accord and sales get generated that way too. Additionally, Mike Roy is more focused on handling/ searching for contracts to make bids on....that kind of avenue and reeling in sales from that angle.
* ActSoft has upped their sales force from 14 to 30 reps....apparently fairly recently.
** Can not imagine anyone more dedicated to this mission than the guys at HISS....after meeting with them this past Thursday. They are REAL and I never had the feeling they ever told me even once what I was “wanting to hear” just to please me. They told me just like I was a family member, one of their sons or daughters....whatever. Up and up and honest. We did a lot of looking into each other’s eyes.....all of us. I felt as comfortable talking to Brian and Fred as I do with all of you guys.
*4 Tiers for CT sales:
1) GPS only....everybody’s got it now, we will still sell 5 here, 7 there, for that purpose, but not our sales goal because of the saturated competition and not as much mark up.
2) Street sweeper example....where you’ve got one I/O for a camera or something. This is the next step up with greater profit margin.
3) Next is M2M with I/O PLUS ethernet port which has even more applications and more profit margin.
4) Highest profit margin is ...well....I can’t remember but I think he was saying something about totally independent unit...battery operated or maybe he was getting at the solar powered version....anytime, anywhere in the world, no limitations??
The further you go up the tier structure, the greater the profit margin, so they are concentrating on the higher tiers.
* They all had just finished with a conference there in the conference room as I arrived, Fred told me later that it had to do with a proposal they are trying to get approved with a potential customer......he sounded very optimistic.
*Shook hands again as he walked me to the elevator and I told him I hope to see him again at a shareholder’s meeting or something. He said they want to do this for us in the future, but didn’t do the thing in NY last year because of the great expense.
* Brian and Fred told me they have all kinds of proposals they have in the “funnel”-----I think they actually have this funnel diagramed on an erasable board or something.....that changes almost daily. Brian said it would make us feel good if we knew they had proposals pending to sell X total amt of CTs for X total amt of dollars...but they can not legally release info on anything until it is fact, so he wanted us to appreciate their position on this. Point is...there is a lot going on behind the scenes that they can’t PR every time they turn around, for such stated reason.
*Somewhat surprised the office is smaller than what I expected.....but very comfortable feeling to it. Sort of about the size of your average hotel desk check in area + lobby + breakfast lounge area.....maybe like a very nice Hampton Inn or something....maybe 2,000 - 2500 sq ft. Very modern, very comfortable though. Big table they use as a workstation right in the middle of the whole shebang where they can lay out the CTs and do whatever they need to do as they process and package the orders. About 4 offices branch off around the perimeter of this main open area. Good size conference room across the hall from them.....I think this is their space also. So that probably does get us up to 2000 - 2500 squares feet for sure.
*People, this is all out of my head and I’m sure there are a few items in here I may have misinterpreted.....but I can assure you this info is 99.9% accurate. It is what my eyes, ears ,and brain processed from a very enjoyable meeting I had with Brian and Fred on Thursday. I hope this gives everyone a feel for the inner workings of our company and where we are going. Please do yourself a favor, and go for a visit when you have the chance. These guys really do care about us and you will be pleased you stopped by.
* I was extremely pleased and excited when I left headquarters Thursday.
* Disclaimer: This visit occurred on Thursday July 13th (12th), 2007 and I am reporting the above information to the best of my ability. I can not be responsible for any errors or omissions or interpretations, so make your own investment decisions. I am just reporting to you my experience during my visit with the officers of Homeland Integrated Security Systems.