CR Talks To: Cameron Smith, Director of Sales and Marketing, Intelix: Emerging From Behind the Scenes
CR: Talk about how most of your product ideas are germinated. Do most of them come from integrators who need certain specific needs answered? Also, how has integrator input shaped your most recent introductions?
Smith: It's really a trickle-down. Ultimately, it's the installers who come to us with a need or a problem, and very often, they're trying to do something and it just doesn't work reliably. That information hits our application team. We spend more money on application support than we do in sales support, meaning that the real core of our sales team does design, troubleshooting, getting down to the nitty-gritty of how the systems work and how we can not just sell a product but a solution. Once they latch onto a problem, they bring it to the engineering team, which then looks at it from a different angle.
CR: What sub-markets of the custom integration discipline do you perceive to be most active these days and most in need of your solutions: retrofit, light commercial, simplified "cookie-cutter" installations, etc.? How are you answering those needs?
Smith: We focus primarily on retrofit. The reasoning behind it, in my opinion, is that 80 percent of the houses over the next 100 years are already built. It makes sense to use cabling already in those homes, and makes sense to expand those homes' needs with new technology. Our solutions do go into new constructions, but they're really ideal for leveraging existing infrastructures.
CR: Talk about the importance of build quality and reliability in your products and any other factors that you feel set you apart from your competition.
Smith: The R&D background gives us a leg up. We're not just re-branding technology and throwing it out there. Obviously, we don't develop everything from the ground up; we go to other manufacturers who lead the industry, and buy circuit boards and chips and reference designs. We take all of that technology, bring it here, and build it into a mainframe system, and then put Intelix processing on top of it.