Monthly Archives: June 2015

Reliance High-Tech announces record-breaking annual financials as revenues rise by 24%

Reliance High-Tech has delivered record annual results thanks to the company’s continued focus on operational excellence and IP technology designed to provide a new breed of solutions for its corporate and public sector end user customers.

A continued orientation towards high security customers across the police service, the utilities, the lone worker and corporate markets, coupled with solutions infused by specialist technology, has resulted in a diversity of new applications and a leading position in high security markets for the Reading-based integrated security specialist.

“By focusing on the right technology and markets and coupling this with strong execution, we’ve created a unique position and advantage,” affirmed managing director Terry Sallas. “We’re winning new customers. Our revenues have grown by 24% and operating margins have improved by 6%.”

Reliance High-Tech has enjoyed a record-breaking year

Reliance High-Tech has enjoyed a record-breaking year

Consolidating its position as a leading solutions provider for both demanding and regulated environments, Reliance High-Tech continues to build on its solid and strong reputation for addressing complex security and technology issues, in turn creating long-term relationships and securing major framework agreements.

“A long term view allows us to capitalise on technology trends and invest in our customers,” urged Sallas. “We will continue building our eco-system of partners and creating new services and value for end user customers, particularly in the era of the cloud.”

In conclusion, Sallas told Risk UK: “By any measure, our performance over the last year has been outstanding. We’re now building on that success. We will continue investing in processes, IT infrastructure and people as we focus on moving even closer to our customers and delivering industry-leading solutions and service levels.”

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Digital Barriers launches Cloud Video Platform in wake of successful beta trials with key partners

Following on from successful beta trials involving key partners, Digital Barriers has announced the launch of its Cloud Video Platform (CVP). From launch, CVP provides automatic video alert verification, camera tampering alerts and face detection, all from a cloud service. In turn, this enables organisations of all sizes across both the commercial and public sectors to analyse their video more effectively and efficiently.

The volume of video being captured and stored by organisations is on the increase each and every year. Typically, it’s locked away within a corporate data repository. In truth, this video is rarely viewed or shared due to the cost and complexity of analysing it or viewing it at the point of need.

Using advanced video analytics, CVP can help organisations identify what’s important and compress live and recorded video such that it may be shared more easily, subsequently enhancing operational effectiveness.

CVP can also help Alarm Receiving Centres (ARCs) reduce their number of false alarms through advanced analytics and enhancement tools over direct web services. Managers and operators are able to use CVP to quickly verify potential threats without significant installation or deployment costs, whereas in the past deploying such tools has been both time-consuming and expensive, leading to prolonged procurements and delayed implementations.

CVP has been designed to be easy to integrate. It’s highly efficient and is extremely cost-effective. The solution is designed to deliver genuine benefits to organisations, helping to make sense of the often limitless volumes of video being captured and stored. Importantly, CVP is able to operate on public, private and secure Government clouds.

Digital Barriers will launch new video analytic algorithms to CVP over the coming months, including its full facial recognition and Government-accredited intrusion detection analytics (designated SafeZone). It will also host third party analytics such as license plate recognition and vehicle traffic analytics.

Later this year, Digital Barriers’ video technology, TVI, will also be available as a cloud service to provide reliable, live, real-time video streaming over cellular networks (including 4G) from existing video stores.

Zak Doffman: CEO at Digital Barriers

Zak Doffman: CEO at Digital Barriers

Zak Doffman, CEO at Digital Barriers, commented: “The growth in IP network video and edge analytics has already created a generational technology shift in this market. Now, the evolution to cloud services will do the same again. Our video streaming and analytics technologies are uniquely capable over wireless networks. This is why they’ve been adopted by some of the world’s leading defence and security organisations and have sold into more than 30 countries. This gives us a very compelling advantage over other cloud video offerings that will inevitably come to market.”

Doffman concluded: “With the launch of the Cloud Video Platform we can give connected cameras anywhere in the world almost instant access to our suite of advanced video tools with no deployment costs or delays. This solution will continue to develop as we add cutting-edge analytics from not only Digital Barriers but also third parties.”

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LOCKEN works alongside UK Power Networks to secure critical electricity supply infrastructures

LOCKEN – the developer of cable-free access control whose solution concentrates on power, intelligence and communication in one smart key – is now working with UK Power Networks to secure the latter’s electricity supply infrastructure.

LOCKEN equips more than 1,500 UK power distribution facilities with its digital access control system, enabling the power supply network to deliver maximum performance to its customers. The solution also improves Health and Safety procedures for the power group’s employees and subcontractors.

This solution allows UK Power Networks to move away from mechanical key-locking systems and make the transition to a solution built around smart keys and electronic cylinders.

The solution deployed by LOCKEN includes the company’s LPCB4 electronic high security padlocks (the most secure in the range). Only registered and accredited personnel are able to access work locations. Every lock opening or attempted opening can be tracked on the system for subsequent analysis.

Detail of a typical electricity substation

Detail of a typical electricity substation

The three networks operated by UK Power Networks use more than 100,000 miles of underground cables and overhead power lines – a distance approximately equivalent to four times the circumference of the Earth.

Reliable power supplies are essential for the UK, and particularly so for Critical National Infrastructure. The decision by UK Power Networks to continue investing in the security of its network and infrastructure is a key part of achieving this reliability.

Nick Dooley, UK managing director at LOCKEN, explained: “The all-digital concept, with the energy supplied by the key, interested UK Power Networks because it allows simple, flexible, efficient access management and is supported by proven software, giving improved operational efficiency. Ultimately, that equals enhanced profitability.”

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Showsec and Leicestershire Police work in unison to cut crime at 2015 Download Festival

Event security specialist Showsec’s crime reduction partnership with Leicestershire Police has produced another significant drop in incidents at the Download Festival. The impact of the joint operation for the 2015 event at Donington Park in the Midlands has resulted in a fall of 35% in reported criminal activity. That follows on from a reduction of almost 70% at the 2014 Festival.

What makes this further decrease particularly satisfying is that there was a considerable increase in the number of people who attended Donington Park this time around. The whole experience for the 80,000 Heavy Metal and Hard Rock music fans who attended was made all the more enjoyable by the effect of a joint crime reduction strategy aimed at enhancing Download’s reputation as the UK’s premier event of its kind.

Showsec worked closely with Leicestershire Police on the introduction of a specific Crime Reduction Strategy for the first time in 2014. This had a profound effect for a festival which could already point to relatively low crime figures for events of this type. Indeed, crime figures at Download have been on a downward curve since 2011 and are now at a five-year low following Leicestershire Police’s publication of the latest results.

At this year’s event, organiser Live Nation introduced cashless RFID technology which meant there was very little cash on site while the police trialled facial recognition technology. Results of the effectiveness of this particular trial are subject to a separate report.

Showsec worked in tandem with Leicestershire Police to reduce incidents of criminality at the 2015 Download Festival

Showsec worked in tandem with Leicestershire Police to reduce incidents of criminality at the 2015 Download Festival

Festival director John Probyn highlighted the importance of these measures in providing the best possible experience for Download’s loyal customers. “We’re absolutely thrilled that crime figures have fallen again at this year’s Download Festival,” enthused Probyn. “Every year, we work tirelessly with Showsec and Leicestershire Police to ensure that we provide the safest environment for our fans to enjoy nothing but fun and great music. These latest figures are not only testament to the strength and effectiveness of that partnership and the initiatives we introduce to keep the fans safe, but also to our incredible community of Download festival goers.”

Detective Inspector Matt Ditcher, who was in charge of Leicestershire Police’s Crime Reduction Strategy, commented: “Crime at Download has always been low, but this year has been really exceptional. When you consider that 80,000 people flood into North West Leicestershire over five days, almost doubling the size of the local population, it’s incredible that so few crimes have been reported to us. The figures reflect the hard work and co-operation that occurs between ourselves, Live Nation and Showsec. We work and patrol together to prevent people falling victim to crime either by encouraging them to keep their belongings safe, carrying out proactive joint patrols or by identifying and removing those people who are acting suspiciously. It’s obvious that our strategy works really well and has been a great success.”

Developing the Crime Reduction Strategy

Showsec placed great emphasis on further development of the Crime Reduction Strategy as the award-winning company looked to build upon such a positive outcome last year.

“We’re continually seeking to raise the bar with our operations, but achieving further progress in this instance presented quite a challenge for us,” explained Showsec’s director Simon Battersby, who served as director of security for this year’s Download Festival. “This was due to the reduction in crime being so high in 2014 and also due to this year’s Download attracting a considerably higher turnout, both in terms of the large numbers who attended the festival and those who populated all of the camp sites.”

Battersby continued: “It’s a measure of the close liaison which we have developed with Leicestershire Police that, together, we were able to achieve another significant reduction in crime. “Simon Cole, the Chief Constable of Leicestershire Police and the Gold Commander, Chief Superintendent Chris Haward, were both praiseworthy of the partnership. The introduction of our own specific Crime Reduction Strategy was piloted at Download last year and then subsequently adopted at other festivals. We believe this partnership in the case of Download and those orchestrated with police forces for festivals in other parts of the country can develop safer and more secure environments in which customers can realise even more enjoyment out of their festival experience.”

The Download Festival is traditionally one of the largest event operations taken on by Showsec each year. It was the commitment and professionalism of the team at all levels which ensured the company rose to the challenges in this instance – and one in particular.

“The wet weather was obviously one of the biggest challenges,” said Battersby. “It is, of course, all part of working at festivals in an English summer, but even though we’ve experienced it before and know what to expect, it doesn’t make it any easier. What does help, though, is having good-natured Download fans on site who accept the weather as being part of the whole experience. They may be soaked to the skin and covered in mud, but they don’t let that spoil their enjoyment of the whole occasion.”

The strength of Showsec’s management infrastructure meant that Battersby was supported by regional managers Richard Church (as arena security manager) and Alan Wallace (security manager for the camp sites) in addition to a number of area managers. These included Joe Milner (project manager) and Louise Stockden (Control Room manager). Operations executive Jennifer Edwards took on the role of crime liaison manager.

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CNL Software appoints James Condron to global vice-president for sales and marketing

Physical Security Information Management (PSIM) software specialist CNL Software is strengthening its senior management team and Board with the promotion of James Condron to the role of global vice-president with responsibility for sales and marketing. Condron will now be in charge of driving growth for the company via its already extensive global partner ecosystem.

Condron joined CNL Software in 2004 and boasts over 25 years’ experience within sales and marketing of IT software and hardware solutions. With a successful track record in delivering significant business growth, he has been instrumental in some of the largest, most complex and ground-breaking security integration projects during his tenure at CNL Software.

Condron’s appointment comes as CNL Software increases its share of the growing international security integration market by demonstrating a strong customer-focused approach and specialism in key vertical segments. Condron’s ability to execute profitable sales through customer relationship management and systematic marketing strategies will help to drive growth over the next three years. Immediate attentions will be focused on process management, partner acquisition and support and customer service strategies.

James Condron: moving into a new role at CNL Software

James Condron: moving into a new role at CNL Software

“We’re all extremely excited that James has accepted this new role,” commented Keith Bloodworth, CEO at CNL Software. “He brings with him great drive, energy and expertise within complex security integration programs.”

Bloodworth continued: “The global growth of connected devices will exceed 40 billion by 2020. That being so, organisations across all vertical markets and geographies will need to transform huge volumes of data into meaningful intelligence for their security and operations. James’ excellent work over the last decade leaves us with no doubt that he’s the right person to help us increase our share within this market segment.”

Speaking about his new role within the business, Condron told Risk UK: “Security operations across the world are eager to leverage additional value from the investments made in their security infrastructure and also to exploit the tremendous benefits offered by the Internet of Things, yet they’re struggling to make sense of the myriad of data being produced by multiple systems and devices. CNL Software can help them cut through all of this complexity.”

In conclusion, Condron stated: “I look forward to engaging with our valued international customer base to help support their operational insights and to working with our world class partner ecosystem as we expand our global footprint.”

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Facewatch founder Simon Gordon wins prestigious accolade at 2015 Worshipful Company of Information Technologists Enterprise Awards

The WCIT Entrepreneurs Forum has announced the winners of the fifth annual WCIT Enterprise Awards. The awards, which were presented at a celebratory dinner held at The Plaisterers’ Hall in London, recognise the achievements of individuals who have demonstrated vision, growth, innovation, funding, use or resources, strategy, execution, ambition and determination to succeed.

Simon Gordon – who founded Facewatch back in March 2010 when he decided that he needed to do something about the problem of pickpockets stealing from customers in his family-owned London business Gordon’s Wine Bar – was bestowed with the prestigious Judges Award.

John O’Connell, chairman of the WCIT Enterprise Awards, commented: “Winning an award is always noteworthy. Winning a WCIT Enterprise Award marks the winner out as someone special. Simon Gordon is an entrepreneur who exemplifies the qualities our Judges were looking for including vision and passion for his subject. I wish Simon and Facewatch every success in their quest to create a ‘Global Champion’ which the WCIT Awards are designed to recognise.”

Simon Gordon (left) receives his award

Simon Gordon (left) receives his award

From its inception as a simple crime reporting tool, Facewatch has now evolved into a multi-functional crime reporting platform that enables businesses, the police service and members of the public to work together when it comes to reducing high volume, low-level acquisitive crime (such as handbag, wallet or mobile phone theft).

Functionality of the Facewatch solution includes data sharing and analysis tools, CCTV and image capture (including facial recognition software from partners), crime analysis tools and secure communication within groups.

Developing at a rapid pace

Simon Gordon, who’s also chairman at Facewatch, told Risk UK: “This award is a great personal honour, but more importantly it recognises all of the hard work, effort and support that I’ve received from everybody associated with Facewatch. In particular, I would like to thank Guy Rigby from Smith and Williamson for his help and support to Facewatch over a long period of time and for nominating me for this award. The company is now developing at a rapid pace and we’re extremely excited about achieving our vision and making a really positive social impact.”

This year’s WCIT Enterprise Awards were held in association with tech UK and sponsored by The Sage Group plc, TechMarketView, Cobalt Corporate Finance, GFT and Smith & Williamson.

The event also featured a keynote speech from Stephen Kelly, CEO of The Sage Group plc. Kelly’s a passionate champion of entrepreneurs and small businesses and promoting their role in driving economic growth.

Also attending the awards ceremony were several other key industry professionals including Steve Garnett (chairman for the EMEA region at salesforce.com), Mike Tobin, the co-founder of Telecity and Richard Holway (chairman of TechMarketView).

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Axis Communications heralds plans for new Lund hq to secure continued growth and focus on R&D

Network surveillance solutions developer Axis Communications is building a new headquarters to secure continued growth with R&D in focus. In early 2016, the company will initiate the construction of a new premises located adjacent to the company’s existing offices in Lund, Sweden. The building is expected to be ready in early 2018 and will be designed to accommodate over 1,000 employees.

Together with principal owner Canon’s chairman and CEO Fujio Mitarai, Axis announced the expansion plan at a meeting held on Tuesday 16 June which involved representatives from the municipality, Lund University and the Faculty of Engineering.

“Since its inception, Axis Communications has been a company with its heart in Lund and, through this new investment, we will strengthen our long-term presence in what is undoubtedly a dynamic growth region,” explained Ray Mauritsson, president of Axis Communications.

“Proximity to Lund University and the Faculty of Engineering is natural for us as an innovative industry leader in the security world. On that basis, we’re focusing on continued R&D in Lund and advancing our local collaboration.”

Ray Mauritsson: president at Axis Communications

Ray Mauritsson: president at Axis Communications

The nine-storey office building covering a total area of 32,000 square metres will occupy an entire block at the Ideon Science Park and accommodate many of Axis’ existing corporate functions. R&D, which constitutes the largest part of the operations in Lund, will also remain in the existing main building on Emdalavägen.

Apart from a mix of individual offices and open plan landscapes, the new building will house a restaurant and a café on the ground floor, a new visitor centre for demonstrations of Axis Communications’ solutions and conference facilities.

The new building will make a new contribution to Lund’s cityscape and be strongly associated with Axis’ long history as an innovative growth company. The building will be environmentally certified according to an environmental and energy optimisation standard with functions such as district heating and heat recovery very much to the fore.

As a major employer in an expansive region, Axis Communications has enjoyed long-standing co-operation with the Faculty of Engineering and Lund University in general. This co-operation manifests itself in many ways. For example, Axis offers engineering students the chance to carry out thesis work at the company.

At present, over half of Axis Communications’ 2,000-plus employees work in Lund.

In 2014, Axis was named as one of Sweden’s best workplaces in employee surveys conducted by Great Place to Work and Universum.

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