Aico, winner of the Best Carbon Monoxide and Domestic Fire Protection Company award 2021 – United Kingdom, is the European market leader in domestic Fire and Carbon Monoxide (CO) protection. Aico is pioneering new technologies and offering high-quality alarms designed, developed, and manufactured in Shannon, Ireland.
Aico is an Ei Company and is the European leader in home life safety, pioneering new technologies and offering high-quality alarms, developed, and manufactured in Ireland. All Aico alarms meet UK standards and offer various sensor types to guarantee protection for every home, delivering education, quality, service, and innovation.
In 2020, Aico expanded its Connected Home offering by acquiring the leading Internet of Things (IoT) solutions provider, HomeLINK. HomeLINK are a multi-award-winning high-tech software team within Aico that leverage cutting edge smart home integration and analytics technologies, providing a complementary platform to present a synergistic approach to IoT.
Relationships Manager of Aico, Tony Boyle, states, “We aim to make homes safer. We believe our responsibility is to create the right safety products and raise awareness of dangers through our educational campaigns to communities, alongside promoting best practices through our Expert Installer training programme. In terms of education, we are also proud to work with schools, colleges, and universities, educating young people on fire safety within the home and offering support with careers advice and guidance to help create opportunities for the next generation and to share our vision.”
Each alarm is third party accredited to the relevant British or European standard for the most reliable life-saving detection. Both Aico and Ei Electronics operate to ISO 9001:2015, ISO 14001:2015 and OHSAS 18001:2007 standards. In addition, Aico’s dedicated Research and Development Team continues to innovate with new products and applications. Together with Ei Electronics, it holds over 20 patents on life-saving alarm detection technologies.
Aico has been first to the market with many ground-breaking innovations that improve protection and make maintenance more accessible, including rechargeable battery backup, wireless radio frequency interconnection, domestic multi-sensor fire alarms and digital information extraction. Tony states, “We have a mission statement that reflects our market leader status, which was formulated with input from every Aico colleague: to be ‘The leader in home life safety, promoting best practice, engaging with our communities, and delivering safer homes.’”
Aico works closely with Housing Associations (HAs), Local Authorities (LAs) and Registered Social Landlords (RSLs) across the UK to specify its high-quality, reliable Smoke, Heat and Carbon Monoxide alarms and accessories. Tony explains, “Our RSMs provide a consultative role, liaising with HAs, LAs and RSLs regarding legislation and regulation and offer solutions and specifications tailored to them.”
All Aico alarms are manufactured in Ireland, and every alarm is individually tested at multiple points of manufacture and never batch tested to ensure quality and reliability. Tony states, “We are pioneers in the industry, providing unparalleled levels of customer support, from our dedicated team of Regional Specification Managers (RSMs) covering the whole of the UK to our knowledgeable Internal Sales and Technical Teams. Our knowledgeable RSMs also deliver free, CPD accredited training all over the UK using our Mobile Training and Demonstration Units. In addition, our award-winning Expert Installer training programme provides electrical contractors with updates on legislation, products and technologies and facilitates the sharing of best practices. This training also provides all the required information to select, site, install and maintain Aico alarms to the highest quality.
“Additionally, we offer our state-of-the-art Centre of Excellence training facilities, based at our Head Office, at no charge to local organisations and trusts, including councils and local charities,” Tony continues. “Here, we can deliver our Expert Installer training sessions, offer students of all ages the opportunity to attend Fire Awareness and Safety Sessions, as well as provide local organisations with the facilities to host networking events and business meetings to assist and promote their work.”
First and foremost, the company is about people. Every member of the Aico team has input into creating the values and mission statement and that shapes both the day-to-day running of the business and the future. Tony explains, “Aico’s company culture is a positive culture of trust, passion, shared genius, teamwork and accountability to deliver safer communities. Aico colleagues collaborate and support one another and are driven to provide quality services in all that they do. Our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programme, Aico in the Community, was developed in 2018 to help schools, colleges, charities, and community organisations achieve their goals and to help build sustainable futures. Our culture, values, behaviours, and ways of working all contribute to the success of our CSR programme.”
Aico has a passion for developing people, and it shows in its culture. It holds itself to high standards and makes sure the values of integrity, excellence, teamwork, commitment, and sustainability come to life in the way it works.
One of the overarching issues in this industry is that of tenant safety, in particular access. Whether this relates to high-rise blocks, sheltered accommodation or the private rented sector, the challenge of gaining access to properties is prevalent. Subsequently, resident engagement is imperative to managing and minimising this issue, which provides the basis for Aico’s efforts to increase engagement and raise awareness amongst tenants.
Tony explains, “The Covid-19 pandemic meant that we had to implement measures to protect colleagues while ensuring continuity of service in the supply of our life safety devices. It was paramount that we continue to supply the industry while keeping colleagues’ safety and wellbeing at the forefront of all decision-making. In March 2020, we communicated that no one would be furloughed and that all jobs would be safe, relieving financial anxieties and reassuring all job security. Any colleagues deemed as being at-risk were sent home immediately, on full pay, and we introduced flexible working for three months. Safety measures were also swiftly implemented with daily temperature checks, sanitisation stations, increased cleaning and social distancing enforced to ensure the safety of colleagues and the maintenance of our protected working environment.”
Following the launch of Aico’s innovative SmartLINK Gateway, which provides real-time data insight into connected Fire and Carbon Monoxide alarms within a property, and the acquisition of leading IoT solutions provider HomeLINK, Aico is expanding its footprint in the Connected Home arena. Tony explains, “We are extremely excited about the value this can bring to customers across the social housing sector and look forward to continuing innovations and progression across the Connected Home and IoT arena.”