Powerhouse Merger Strengthens Largest Canine Security/Services Provider in the Industry.
ITC Capital Partners, LLC (ITC) and American K-9 Detection Services, LLC (AMK9) today announced a merger transaction under which the companies will join the capabilities, resources, reputation, and market share of two industry leaders in the canine services and training sector. The union creates a stronger, more diverse global provider that is able to offer the full spectrum of canine-related security services. Under the terms of the arrangement, AMK9 will continue to operate under its independent brand.
The merger combines AMK9's operational capabilities and robust international and domestic resources and support infrastructure with ITC's flagship label, iK9 Holding Company, LLC (iK9). iK9, backed by its exclusive licensing agreement with Auburn University's Research and Technology Foundation, is now the driving force behind the cutting-edge VAPOR WAKE® canine detection program. VAPOR WAKE® detection has changed the landscape within the canine services industry, and is currently employed by TSA, AMTRAK, and the Federal Protective Service (FPS) to screen passengers and visitors at airports, mass transit hubs, and government offices.
"Today is a new day for the future of AMK9. As the company passes over the 10 year threshold, I am thrilled to merge with iK9 and its parent ITC Capital Partners to create a more integrated business that will continue to be the premier canine services provider in the marketplace," said Mark Mahler, who is transitioning from the role as AMK9 Chief Executive to serve on the board of directors of ITC, overseeing long-term strategic planning for the enterprise. "This transaction will significantly accelerate AMK9's growth strategy and solidify our position as the worldwide leader in canine services. The new company will be a bigger, better, bolder canine services provider with expanded scope, scale and resources enabling us to be more competitive in existing and new markets with expanded service offerings tailored to evolving customer demands. We are confident that the combined capabilities will set the highest standards in our industry, and establish a business platform that is better positioned to compete in this highly fragmented and rapidly changing market sector. "
As part of a larger, stronger, vertically integrated company - both operationally and financially - the merger will offer additional stability as well as unlimited research and development opportunities moving forward. AMK9 and ITC Capital Partners have highly compatible cultures, parallel core values, similar management philosophies and a commitment to innovation and customer service, creating an environment for a seamless transition.
"We are combining two fantastic teams that will be focused on understanding our customers' needs and providing the most effective products and services in the canine marketplace," said Todd Holt, incoming President & CEO of AMK9. Holt, who has worked under the ITC umbrella for 16 years, most recently as President of Knology Inc., went on to state, "AMK9's current executive team will remain with the company, helping to usher in a smooth transition and integration with ITC and its subsidiary company, iK9. The entire AMK9 family, along with the established systems infrastructure, will provide a firm foundation for future growth."
About ITC Capital Partners, LLC/iK9
ITC Capital Partners, LLC is the parent company of iK9, the leader in VAPOR WAKE® technology. VAPOR WAKE® technology enhances explosive detection canine teams with additional abilities and training to detect hand-carried and/or body-worn explosives. iK9 trains and sells VAPOR WAKE® dogs and trains handlers for any security situation.
AMK9 was founded in 2003 to offer quality contract working dog (CWD) detection services to governments, international organizations, businesses and other private entities around the world. As a result of the company's commitment to excellence, AMK9 currently has a global footprint consisting of over 650 CWD teams. The team at AMK9 is passionate about the mission to protect lives, and takes pride in the delivery of superior K-9 services, worldwide.