Urbana firm purchases monoring company

Hughey and Phillips purchased TowerSentry, based in Lakeland, Fla., as a way to offer more services in the obstruction lighting industry, said Jim Sullivan, vice president of sales for Hughey and Phillips. TowerSentry has about 10 employees and provides light monitoring services and technical support for existing obstruction lighting.

The terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

The deal will not add new jobs in Champaign County, Sullivan said, but will allow Hughey and Phillips to offer a wider range of services to its customers. Hughey and Phillips shares a facility at West Twain Avenue with Sarica, a sister company. Combined, the companies have about 120 employees, up from about 50 just three years ago.

TowerSentry has a National Operations Center in Florida, and will remain at its current location. The company’s employees will also be retained at their current offices, Sullivan said.

Hughey and Phillips sells obstruction lighting, often used to alert aircraft to tall objects such as cell phone towers and wind turbines. TowerSentry is able to monitor obstruction lighting from its operations center to make sure the equipment is working properly, and can notify the Federal Aviation Administration in case lighting malfunctions on a structure, Sullivan said.

“Our main competitors have a monitoring service as well,” Sullivan said. “It puts us on more equal footing with them.”

TowerSentry can monitor lighting from almost any manufacturer nationwide, along with Hughey and Phillips products. In addition to monitoring, TowerSentry can also provide troubleshooting, technical support and other services.

The acquisition has been in the works for about a year, Sullivan said.