Clawson-based serial entrepreneur has success in fire extinguisher technology

Gerald Flood got into the fire extinguisher business about 20 years ago and has turned it into a entrepreneurial streak that keeps him swinging for the fences.

When a friend’s fire extinguisher business went under, Flood bought the technology. He turned that technology into a successful company then sold it. That became the inspiration for his next venture — FireXonline, which sells fire extinguishers for computer servers. FireXonline, which Flood still runs today, became the inspiration for yet another venture — OnGuard, which is developing a safety measure to prevent dryer fires.

“It’s one thing that led into another and another,” Flood says.

FireXonline specializes in fire extinguishers for computer server racks. If the worst happens and an overheating server ignites it can be contained and extinguished in the rack, without disturbing other racks or equipment in the room. The 7-year-old company employs three people and is serving as the latest jump off for Flood’s newest start-up OnGuard.

OnGuard is developing a dryer accessory that sense when something like a lint fire is about to happen. When that mechanism has been tripped, OnGuard fills the space with water, extinguishing it.

Flood plans to spend the rest of the year commercializing his new product and expects to hit $500,000 in sales in his first year, and $2-$3 million in sales in the next. If that happens he expects to grow his staff from one (himself) to up to 10 people.

“The potential in this dryer product is huge,” Flood says.

Source: Gerald Flood, founder of FireXonline and OnGuard
Writer: Jon Zemke