SECURITY INDUSTRY BUSINESS HAS BEEN MOSTLY FLAT SINCE 9/11
LOS ANGELES—Despite predictions that the electronic security industry would experience a huge upswing in business as a result of the events of Sept. 11, 2001, this year most of the security technology field has performed poorly in sales, profits and stock prices. According to this month’s Mallon Security Investing report, except for bomb detection equipment, there has been no real infusion of money into the industry.
In the report, Security Industry Association (SIA) Executive Director Richard Chace says, “There are some pilot programs and there is a trickle of funds—but no real explosion.” PSA President Bill Bozeman adds, “It’s been great for the consultants, but the work hasn’t really trickled down to the integrators yet.”
Analysts attribute poor overall industry performance to the sagging state of the economy and the slow pace of getting new mandates and funding from government bureaucracies. Even biometrics companies, which were expected to perform well, are disappointing analysts. Fingerprint readers have made some headway, but facial recognition systems haven’t been deployed much beyond some controversial airport trials.
According to the Los Angeles Times, Identix Inc., which recently bought Visionics Corp., expects to lose money at least until summer 2003. Identix officials attribute the company’s struggles to the fact that deploying biometric technology takes longer than investors expect. For the biometrics market, however, the outlook appears to be promising.
According to the USBX Advisory Services report, with Congress expected to pass an emergency supplemental appropriations bill and with the approval of the President’s Homeland Security bill, “the floodgates should swing open shortly.”
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