BSIA survey points at strong Middle East demand for UK security solutions

infosecurityThe outlook for the coming year seems much stronger with an impressive 80 per cent of members anticipating a rise in orders. (Image source: Vaughan Willis/ high demand in the Middle East for the latest security systems from UK businesses is set to continue growing, according to a survey carried out on behalf of the British Security Industry Association (BSIA)

The research, commissioned by the BSIA's export council, revealed that 87 per cent of the council's member companies are currently active in the region. Of those questioned, 40 per cent reported that they had witnessed a notable increase in revenues derived from the Middle East over the past year.

A similar proportion of companies saw business levels remaining unchanged, whilst a much smaller number, consisting of 20 per cent reported that sales in the region had actually fallen.

The report revealed that the outlook for the coming year was even stronger with an impressive 80 per cent of members anticipating a rise in orders.

Focusing on the business areas covered by the member companies who completed the survey, most were electronic security manufacturers with seven per cent being involved in cash and valuables in transit solutions and a similar number providing training.

John Davies, chairman of the BSIA's export council, said, "This new research shows that there is a real appetite out there for the best that British security solutions can offer.

"It is also encouraging to see that when it comes to making buying decisions ever closer attention is being paid to factors such as compliance with industry standards.

"The strong performance of council members, and the prediction of better to come in 2013, is a reflection of the quality of solutions and the industry-leading nature of the innovations that BSIA companies are able to deliver to customers across a wide range of sectors in the region," he added.

When questioned regarding the approach to security technology, the areas out in front – cited by 25 per cent of the responsers – were HD CCTV and Physical Security Information Management (PSIM).

The high-definition revolution in consumer electronics has been making its mark in the Middle East with the roll-out of mega-pixel CCTV cameras to provide addition detail in security critical applications like banks and hotel lobbies.

Also, the rise of PSIM in the Middle East has followed the surge of interest worldwide in the bringing together and operation of a range of security systems, especially where larger projects are concerned.

Not far behind in third place in the security technology stakes is hybrid security solutions. The hybrid approach allows the combination of legacy analogue infrastructure with the latest digital, networked, security technology which can prove beneficial if site owners want to maximise the return on investment on older elements when upgrading to IP.

Other elements that were reported as having had a real impact were biometrics for access control, more efficient and reliable switch mode power supplies for security systems, and IP related technology.

Significantly, the research investigated the leading factors that export council members were seeing as the drivers for customer buying decisions on the ground in the Middle East.

It was discovered, for instance, that compliance with industry standards was the main decision-making factor by 20 per cent of the firms questioned when dealing with Middle East customers.

The survey also sought to discover the vertical markets leading the way in taking up the solutions offered by BSIA export council member companies.

It was reported that the top market sector was government on 46.7 per cent, underlining their pivotal role with regards to major projects in the region, followed in second place by residential on 13.3 per cent. The remaining sectors of note singled out by the respondents were banking (ATM protection), transport, hotel and leisure, and office developments.

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