Measuring VMS Vendor Size - 100,000 Deployment Claim

ISS spammed me (due to ISC West.) They claim they have "over 100,000 deployments globally". Now if you shipped a free copy with every D-Link camera sold in Office Depot, you could make up a number like that. Real deployments would help, too.

How does one measure VMS vendor "size"? Cameras being recorded? Sales volume? Deployments (regardless of camera count)?


Rodney, it is whatever one prefers :)

For reference, Milestone claims to be proven "in more than 100,000 installations worldwide".

How that compares to ISS's "over 100,000 deployments using ISS technology", I couldn't begin to guess.

I emailed ISS asking for clarification on what they count as a 'deployment'.

As for us, we really don't concern ourselves with size questions when evaluating a product. Surveys are useful to see what integrators are actually happy using (e.g., see Favorite VMS Manufacturers 2014). In that regard, ISS is a little difficult to compare because they are relatively strong in South America and relatively weak in North America.

...if you shipped a free copy with every D-Link camera sold in Office Depot, you could make up a number like that.

Ah yes, learning from the Microsoft per-CPU license model, from the time when every computer shipped "included" an MS-DOS license (even if the computer didn't actually come with DOS installed). Great way to pump up your numbers.

Rodney, I'd like to address your concerns in two manners. First, I'd like to note that we don't believe in “spamming”. Somewhere from a trade show, personal contact, or previous communication, we (as a company) must have been in touch. We do not buy lists, and we use Constant Contact, which from my research has some fairly strong spam controls. If you feel you've been spammed, you can certainly unsubscribe, and the service automatically would remove you. In this case, I've already instructed our marketing personnel to remove you from the list; however, I will reach out to you in the near future to both confirm your satisfaction with our email policies as well as to introduce you to our company and offer some visibility on how we determine a factual claim of 100,000 deployments.

Keep in mind ISS is over 15 years in business. It took us time to get to this number that admittedly, we are quite proud of.

Our COO, Aluisio Figueiredo addressed John almost immediately after receiving his email. We take John's requests and insight of the industry very seriously and it was a priority to address his (and your) concern. I’m sure John already sent you the email from Aluisio (which we deem public and could be forwarded) or may have sent you some of the key points. To summarize:

  • The 100,000 deployment number is about 2 years old and has since increased.
  • The number is based on key files generated per unique solution. We call each of these a deployment. In some cases they could be a 4 camera system on one server, on others it can be an enterprise solution with multiple servers, as in or 5000 camera, 106 server deployment in Latin America, or our 1300 camera, 40 server deployment in New Jersey. Each counts as one deployment.
  • So the actual number of servers running ISS will likely be higher.
  • If a project increases, and we issue a new key file, that does not increase our “number of deployments” count, as we amend the key and don't generate a new one.
  • We also do count our OEM and private labeled sales, including those with a global technology provider based in EMEA with a US headquarters. This particular company uses our software, but with their branding.

Although a competitor, I also believe Milestone’s claim of “over 100,000 installations” worldwide. Both companies are recognized by IMS Research in the Top 10 in VMS worldwide. And Matt to address your concerns, no, we do not ship a single license with any camera manufacturer, so we do not artificially pad our number in that manner.

If anyone has further questions, I and Aluisio, are certainly welcome to discuss this and be more transparent than most VMS providers are on issues such as this. We remain one of the few independent VMS providers remaining, and we value our integrity and our commercial capabilities as highly as our technology offerings. I’m not sure if IPVM allows us to put our contact information in a thread, but we’re certainly very open to Mr. Honovich forwarding our contacts to any interested (or concerned) parties.

Suranjan Ray, VP of Strategic Allicances, ISS

Surajan,

Thanks for following up. Aluisio did respond immediately but I have been swamped with things this week so have not responded.

How many of those 100,000 deployment do you estimate to be in the US vs outside of the US? I ask because we almost never hear of ISS in the US.

John,

Admittedly, a very small percentage of our deployments would be in the United States. It’s difficult for me to determine exactly, because our licensing is based on language and not region, so although most of the licenses indicate English, very few I suspect are in the US yet.

My instinct is that between 2 to 4% of those deployments would be in the US. But this is rapidly changing. We've built out our US team significantly in the US, with a growing degree of national coverage, including Eastern and Western Regional Directors, RSMs, internal sales, and dedicated project managers / technical support for the US.

Interestingly, although we’re developing some run-rate business, the majority of our current US deployments, as well as most of our prospects, seem to be in the enterprise VMS or video analytics (LPR, FCR, Container Recognition, etc.), so although I anticipate our US operations will begin to make a significant impact to our revenue and number of channels sold, it may impact the number of deployments only slightly. Most of the projects we’re looking at would skew the “deployment” to “camera” ratio with larger number of cameras per deployment than most of our international sales. Its fundamentally a product of our bringing on more experienced and technical sales personnel in the US - we've focused on quality of service over quantity of salespeople – it leads to less number of projects but with larger camera counts.

We're going to change how often you hear of ISS in the US. I joined the company just a year ago with a focus on US and Canada business. In the last year, we've begun to put together a great team, brought on more formal partner relationships, including distribution, adjusted dealer pricing favorably, created one of the most aggressive project registration programs, and are just beginning to engage A/E firms and consultants. We're also deeping our integrations and partners, focusing on our camera partners and access control as a start.

We'll keep you informed of our major wins and product releases, and strive to add value to your forum at IPVM.