Panasonic Acquires VMS Specialist Video Insight
Panasonic’s deal for Video Insight gives the Japanese conglomerate an open platform VMS it previously lacked.
HOUSTON – Panasonic Corp. has entered into an agreement to acquire Video Insight, a provider of video management software (VMS) primarily to the education market in North America. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Video Insight, based here, provides enterprise-class video management solutions to 6,500 K-12 schools and higher education campuses in the southeastern United States and Texas. It also has clients in the financial, government, retail and transportation markets.
In a press release, Panasonic said the acquisition is “part of its strategy to expand business opportunities for both companies in the education market in North America.” The Japanese conglomerate also said it has “set a clear target of reaching 10 trillion yen [about $85 billion] in sales by 2018, and that B2B solutions, including security systems and video surveillance, will play a key role in achieving its global growth initiatives.
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Video Insight Co-founder and CEO J. Robert Shaw told SSI his company elected to be acquired by Panasonic after receiving more than a dozen “unsolicited offers and unsolicited advances” from mostly private equity firms during the last couple years.
“Panasonic makes great products and they are vertically focused. They are focused around 12 different verticals. We like that orientation. We think that is the right way to sell,” Shaw said. “We are very focused on the product being the right solution for our customer, the right pricing, the right distribution model.”
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Under terms of the deal, Video Insight will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Panasonic. Founded in 2002, the company will remain under autonomous management, led by Shaw and James Whitcomb, who is a co-founder and CTO, for at least two years and possibly three years, Shaw said. The company will also continue to market its Advidia brand of OEM cameras, as well as its BridgeVMS bundled hardware and software solutions.
Shaw said despite having no outside funding Video Insight has grown quickly, posting a 40% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) since 2009.
“We just felt like we couldn’t continue to grow at the rate we have been growing. It’s the law of trying to multiply large numbers. We felt it was really valuable to find the right partner,” he said.
Panasonic’s investment in the business will allow Video Insight to expand beyond its mostly regional footprint and grow nationally, Shaw said.
“It was a natural fit for us to move forward with a camera company. They have really great products, but they don’t really have a strong VMS. They have some embedded units with software on them, but those are not really an open platform, video management solution. That’s why it was a good fit for them as well as for us,” he explained.
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