Mace Security International Inc. holds its annual meeting today in Center City, where the chief executive officer will outline a "new strategy" for the unprofitable enterprise named after its namesake Mace pepper spray product.
The company has much to contend with:
Pepper spray and surveillance equipment represent an "aging" product line that needs an update, CEO Dennis Raefield, who was hired in August, told investors last month. Former CEO Louis D. Paolino is contesting his May dismissal. Efforts to sell the car washes that the company once bought to diversify have stalled. And income from an online marketing business acquired last year has disappointed.
For 2007, Mace lost $6.6 million on revenue of $47 million. In the latest quarter, it lost $2.1 million on revenue of $12 million. Shares closed unchanged yesterday at 80 cents.
And company headquarters has been a moving target. Once in Mount Laurel, Mace said in January that it had moved to Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Under Raefield, the headquarters has returned to a Philadelphia suburb — Horsham this time.
What's in the company's new plan? Officials didn't respond to phone messages yesterday, but Raefield pointed the way in the November call with investors.
He's looking to capitalize on the famous Mace name. And he'd like to put that name on home-security systems. "It's a protection name … it says, 'Leave me alone, go away.' And that's the direction we're going to go," Raefield said.
John C. Bogle, founder of the Vanguard Group Inc., will receive the Allen T. Bonnell Award from the Community College of Philadelphia on Tuesday at the Union League. Named for the college's founding president, the award honors commitment to "transformational change." Last year, it went to Bill Cosby.