Guardian Protection Services Inc., Pittsburgh, Pa., executed a purchase transaction with Certified Security of Chicago, which expands Guardian’s geographic footprint to include the Chicago; Rockford, Ill.; and Sheboygan, Wis., markets.

“We just continue to expand,” said Russell Cersosimo, Guardian CEO. “We think the Chicago market has tremendous opportunity. It’s an undeveloped security market… It’s a tremendous opportunity because of the consolidations over the years.”

The integration of Certified Security with Guardian Protection Services provides an opportunity for customers to benefit from the strengths of both firms. Guardian will use the expertise of both firms to continue expansion into the commercial, industrial, new construction and residential sectors of its new market territory in Chicago and surrounding market areas. Julius Rutili, founder and CEO of Certified Security, along with Certified Security employees, will remain as integral members of the new Guardian/Certified integrated firm. “I’ve always been impressed with his technical know-how,” Cersosimo said of Rutili.

Guardian serves a customer base of 165,000 throughout all of its markets. The company is also looking into markets in Minneapolis, Detroit, Phoenix, Charlotte and the state of Florida. It has three other acquisitions in development, which Cersosimo expects to announce soon. In 2005 Guardian Protection Services was ranked 10th by SDM magazine in the SDM 100 (SDM, May 2005, p. 34).