Mapping Out the PSIM Industry: What We Learned in 2015, What’s to Come in 2016

Keith Bloodworth, CEO of CNL Software, offers his reflections and predictions for the PSIM world.

(Keith Bloodworth, CEO of CNL Software, reviews what was happening in the Physical Security Information Management (PSIM) world in 2015, primarily looking at the security and facilities market and his market predictions for these markets in 2016.)

The year 2015 has seen the rise of more terrorist-related tension in the Middle East, in Europe and now in the U.S. Together with the understanding of having joined up security systems, it is driving up the need for increased situational awareness. Demand by government agencies and major global cities for large-scale centralized operations to deal with major incidents is growing rapidly. India alone is planning significant unified projects in 80 cities, while Israel, Turkey and China all have ambitious plans for creation of safe as well as smart cities. Information is a key factor in dealing with issues relating not just to terrorism, but also to natural disasters and day-to-day security. Public safety is high on most political agendas and across the enterprise markets, physical and logical security is becoming a board level priority.

As the security market continues to grow worldwide, traditional markets such as the U.S. and Western Europe are steadily expanding their capabilities, while newer markets such as China, India and the Middle East are investing at a much faster pace. The new markets are mainly IP-based integrated solutions, which has brought about many significant changes, not least of which is a shake-up of the VMS and CCTV camera markets. New product entrants from Asia — China in particular — are undermining the traditional camera markets with quality products at lower prices than traditional suppliers.

As a result of margin erosion, hardware for most security applications is rapidly becoming a commodity. Markets have seen significant consolidation of VMS and camera manufacturers. Following on from Tyco acquiring Exacq and Canon acquiring Milestone, M&A highlights in 2015 include the Hanwha partial acquisition of Samsung Techwin, Canon’s acquisition of Axis Communications, Panasonic acquiring VideoIQ and most recently FLIRs acquisition of DVTEL. The “old” world order in security is gone and a new set of global players are arriving. These players are causing traditional system integrators to compete, with lower margins and more volume as the new way to do business.

The “old” world order in security is gone and a new set of global players are arriving. These players are causing traditional system integrators to compete, with lower margins and more volume as the new way to do business.

This, in turn, creates new challenges for the system integrators to be part of the value chain, as they may have to invest heavily in IT skills to meet any IT/IQ way of working. VMS’ are becoming more intelligent, video analytics are now becoming more feasible as clients begin looking for complete solutions rather than individual products. Complex integration of multiple systems, such as VMS and ACS with other sub-systems like perimeter protection, will demand rules-based PSIM solutions to manage increasing volumes of disparate to provide better awareness and management of any situation; providing end users with one well-presented and managed Enterprise solution.

RELATED: Looking to 2016: Security Pros Predict Growth in Video Surveillance, Internet of Things

2016 Predictions Based on 2015 Projects and Bids

Looking forward into 2016, we are seeing greater investment in technology to overcome spending cuts in manpower, particularly in large scale homeland security, state, government and police security operations. Strategic partnerships will be a key driver as the public and private sector work ever closer to identify threats, report them and provide their security infrastructure to resolve them. Simply put, most local governments do not have the financial resources to tackle problems alone so public/private initiatives will have to grow.

Closing the Gaps within Intelligence Security Management — With the continually increasing diversity of security threats across the globe, 2016 will see the emergence of closer integration between all systems within the security disciplines that make up intelligence security management. The lack of deep end-to-end integration between the systems driving the physical, personnel, communications, information systems, security classification and operations security disciplines highlights the need to challenge the mantra of situational awareness. It also accelerates the demand for situational intelligence through integrations focused on empowering counterintelligence techniques in preventing situations from occurring or at least providing effective early warning signals.

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