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Advanced Business Systems opens Syracuse branch

By Journal Staff

Date:

EAST SYRACUSE — The office-technology company Advanced Business Systems, Inc. is opening its first branch office in an East Syracuse building it purchased in March.

Advanced Business Systems acquired the 5,300-square-foot former United Auto Workers (UAW) Local 624 building at 714 W. Manlius St. in a deal that closed March 27. It is the company’s first branch office outside of its headquarters at 22811 Murrock Circle in the town of Pamelia in Jefferson County, north of Watertown.

“We’ve grown enough that we need to have a physical presence in Syracuse,” says Edward Jones, owner and CEO of Advanced Business Systems, which provides businesses with technology ranging from printers and copiers to computers, network installation, and network management. The company served clients in Onondaga County before it decided to open an office in the Syracuse area, he says.

“To be honest with you, our market share [in Watertown] is so significant that we can’t expect to grow anymore up here,” Jones says. “Syracuse was a logical reach for us.”

Three Advanced Business Systems employees started working from the East Syracuse branch at the beginning of April, according to Jones. He wants to add two more employees in East Syracuse by the end of the year.


The branch office is currently being renovated with new flooring and energy-efficient lighting. Crews are also tearing out a wall to expand a showroom planned for the back of the facility.

“The back half of the building is a meeting hall, so it’s just a big open room with tile floors,” Jones says. “But the front half was offices and hadn’t seen any renovations in many, many years.”

Salina–based DeMascole Inc. is the general contractor for the renovations, which carry a price tag of just under $30,000, Jones says. The contractor also handled design work, so Advanced Business Systems did not hire a separate architect.

The office-technology company paid $150,000 for the former UAW hall, which it purchased directly from the union without a broker. Advanced Business Systems learned the building was for sale because UAW Local 624 was one of its clients, according to Jones.

Advanced Business Systems financed the building acquisition through Watertown Savings Bank. It hired a new vice president of the Syracuse region, Nick Mallaro, to manage operations at the new office, Jones says.

The new branch will not have a grand opening or open house for about two months, according to Ryan Jones, who is Advanced Business Systems’ sales and marketing manager and is Ed Jones’ son. Renovations are not scheduled to wrap up for another three to four weeks, and Syracuse employees are currently using the facility as a space to base their field operations, he says.

“They’re really using it as a place to go and leave some paperwork right now,” Ryan Jones says.

Advanced Business Systems is still working with local zoning officials to gain approval to mount its own sign on the building. Currently, UAW Local 624’s sign still hangs on the structure, Ryan Jones says.


Company background

Advanced Business Systems started in 1991 as a copy-machine dealer, Ed Jones says. Over the years the company widened its offerings to include other devices such as computers and servers as well as information-technology services like consulting, network installation, and network management.



The company is headquartered in a 9,000-square-foot building it owns in Pamelia. It employs a total of 29 people.

Ed Jones would like to hire five or six more employees by the end of the year, he says. About 75 percent of the company’s employees work on the road, visiting clients, he estimates.

Advanced Business Systems generated $3.98 million in revenue in 2011, up 12 percent since 2009, according to Ed Jones. He is targeting 20 percent revenue growth in 2012.

About 80 percent of the company’s revenue currently comes from St. Lawrence, Lewis, and Jefferson counties, Ed Jones says. He thinks the new Syracuse office will help the firm grow its operations to the south.

“We now have a brick-and-mortar presence,” he says. “We’re here to stay.”

The company has a special place in the market because it is locally owned, Ed Jones says. Most office-technology companies operating in upstate New York, like Toshiba or Xerox, are owned by large corporations, he says. He adds that he is only aware of one locally owned competitor for Advanced Business Systems in the Syracuse area — Syracuse–based Usherwood Office

Technology.

Advanced Business Systems works with clients of a variety of sizes, Ed Jones says.

“I can tell you that we do business with local governments and municipalities, we do business with the largest hospital in the [Watertown] area, we do 11 of the 13 school districts in Jefferson County,” he says. “But we also do little veterinary clinics and little dentists’ offices.”

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