When Worlds Converge

Daniel Nix Brings Markets Together At Bosch Security Systems

SCN: What is your position, and what does it entail?
Daniel Nix: I manage the sales team for all of the Americas. Within the Communications Systems Division there’s pro-audio, intercom, a variety of business lines, and I’m responsible for all the products that we sell through this division.

SCN: How has your background prepared you for your role?
DN: Like most of us, I came to this industry because I was a musician and I love music. I’ve worked in music retail, in contracting, in a recording studio, in a performing arts theater, and as a manufacturer’s rep. I’m a jack of all trades—which when you’re younger can be a detriment, but as you get older you realize that you’ve broadened yourself. I’ve walked in the shoes of most of the people we work with every day, which helps me understand the unique needs of many markets, including contracting.

SCN: What are your short- and longterm goals?
DN: The first goal was to better organize the former Telex Communications family of brands and sales structure within the Bosch structure. It’s hard to take advantage of all the benefits of Bosch until you’ve fully completed that transition. The second, but simultaneous, goal is to get us front and center back into the contracting and install market. When a company goes through the period of time where they have to position themselves to be acquired, that causes a product-to-market delay. So we had a gap over the last couple years that we will fill with fervor this year.

SCN: What is the greatest challenge that you face?
DN: Right now it’s the economic environment. I managed a sales organization pre- and post-9/11, and during that time it was similar, but some markets continued strong or continued to grow because people could still access cash. But when you take the ability to borrow and your money freezes like has happened here in the fourth quarter, that affects everyone everywhere. And until this logjam breaks, it’s going to be difficult for everyone, no matter what industry.

One of the nice things about being a part of Bosch is that we’re a part of a global company that has business entities in basically every aspect you can think of, and I’m able to share with other managers, and learn from them, how we’re all being affected, and then we know it’s not unique to anyone’s market, or that it’s not unique to the United States.

SCN: Where do you see the market heading?
DN: Business will not stop, but people have to be smart now. You have to choose your partners wisely. Will the company you chose to invest in be there for you one year, three years, five years from now? We know we will. All my business plans go out to 2014 and 2015.

And while the old buzzword was synergy, the new one is convergence, and I believe it 100 percent. Being a part of a large organization like Bosch with its security systems entity means we can partner on more projects, and now we’re leading the path for mass notification, mass evacuation, and life safety systems. For instance, we’ve partnered with Virginia Tech, where we’re implementing mass notification systems. This type of convergence is definitely an emerging market.

SCN: Are there new initiatives we are likely to see from Bosch?
DN: Q1 of this year we launch phase one of five phases over the next three years of the EV Innovation line of products— a broad, application-specific solution in a loudspeaker family. EV Innovation has been driven by a company-wide understanding of what our customers think, what they need, and how they want to improve what they do. We want to be part of that equation.

One of the things that’s unique about Electro-Voice is that we manufacture down to the component level. That’s where this product started. It started with the needs of the marketplace, and the most innovative components Electro-Voice has ever built.

SCN: How can systems contractors better position themselves to profit from products and/or services you have to offer?
DN: With the Bosch commercial audio and the Electro-Voice pro audio products, we offer a comprehensive solution for 90 percent of the needs of the systems contractors in our market. We have something for all of them, and that’s important because there was once a time when it was common to get every single different component from various manufacturers to make a system. But if we’re converging, you need a lot of that work to be done for you. And that’s what we’re doing now. We’re making package systems, smarter systems, systems that intercommunicate— making it easier for contractors to get their business done. It is key to simplifying the job.

Mary Bakija is a writer and editor with more than 15 years of storytelling experience. Bakija is currently pursuing a Master's degree in Library and Information Science to help others find and tell important stories that might otherwise be lost, and to ensure those stories are preserved for future generations to see.