Security man sells business after losing contract
Long-time Byron Bay security company operator Geoff McEvoy has been left scratching his head after losing the tender to look after Byron Shire Council-owned property – a job his company had been doing for 15 years.
A perplexed Mr McEvoy said the council hadn’t properly explained to him why it had accepted the tender of $64,833 a year from Sydney security giants, SNP Security, which was nearly $25,000 higher than his $40,000 tender.
He said when he asked the council officer dealing with the issue what he had done wrong to lose the tender, he said he was told: “We felt the need for a change.”
“I really don’t know why I lost the tender, especially at $25,000 a year more,” he said.
“I’ve had letters from the council complimenting the guards on the work they were doing.
“It would be different if they (the council) had said they got a better price, or if we had a list of non-compliance issues. But in all the 15 years, I think there was only one unlocked window or door that was missed.”
Byron Shire Council’s executive manager of corporate management, Mark Arnold, said the council had awarded the tender to SNP Security in September last year.
Mr Arnold said the council had a responsibility to provide security for certain high-risk community assets for the best value for money.
“Under the open tender method, two tenders were received and assessed by a panel,” he said.
“The tenders were assessed on price, capability and experience, service delivery, staffing, quality systems, management and financials.”
Mr Arnold said the successful tender, SNP Security, had demonstrated better value for money, a sound management model and substantially lower alarm response fees.
He said the SNP Security patrol office was located in Alstonville and employed people from the Northern Rivers .
Mr McEvoy said the council contract was the biggest part of his business and his “bread and butter”.
As a result of losing the tender and after operating his Cape Byron Security Service in the Byron Shire for 23 years, he accepted the SNP Security offer to buy him out. That officially happened on May 1.
He said he had little option but to sell knowing he would be eventually “swallowed up” by the “big end of town”.
Mr McEvoy said he was disappointed at losing the tender and it was even harder to understand given the council’s shaky financial position. He said he would now focus on expanding his Eastpoint Security Academy which holds courses across Australia.