Hanwha Techwin Spins Out Security Business

By John Honovich, Published Mar 06, 2018, 08:58am EST

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In an era of security acquisitions and mergers, with most recently Avigilon being acquired by Motorola and Bosch merging its security businesses, Hanwha is going against that trend, spinning out its security business to provide greater independent operation.

In this note, we examine the move, the competitive positioning of Hanwha now and the potential impact this spin out will have.

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Competitive *********** - ********

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Emerged ** ****** ******

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Outlook *** *******

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Vote / ****

Update: ****** ******* ******** **** ********** *** *** *** ****

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Comments (47)

This will be good for Hanwha. I like the concept of having a company focus on one product line. One of the problems we have experienced with Bosch over the years is their intrusion, fire, access and video lines were often neglected by the Bosch and underdeveloped. This was a big reason we moved to DMP as they were dedicated to security. 

Samsung was never appealing to me, Hanwha continues to become more appealing to me as time goes on. I've tested some of their cameras, while they could use some improvement they're not terrible. 

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Hanwha just put a for sale sign on their security business. 

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Why? If they wanted to sell it, they could simply sell it. Corporations can certainly sell off divisions / parts directly.

To be clear, the video surveillance industry has been in such a wild ride the past few years, I would not rule out anything but, to the extent that Hanwha security can continue to grow, I would not see them trying to sell it off.

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We both heard the same rumor :)

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Make that 3 of us. 

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Mike, I thought you were against 'rumors', as in your now infamous proclamation:

To be clear, your rumors could be right here and I may just be out of the loop on this one but the rumors I have heard about Hanwha being sold off make no sense.

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Man, I am surprised it took you that long to drag me into this. 

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Come on, Mike. Don't deflect. You brought yourself into this by endorsing the Hanwha rumor.

It's pretty clear you are not looped into such things since you blew it so badly on the obvious Avigilon sales process

In the state of this industry, it's possible for nearly any company to be sold but the 'rumors' so far don't have much substance.

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I was just agreeing with someone on something I have heard.  No, you definitely brought this on me.  You love doing this and were just waiting for the chance.  

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No, you definitely brought this on me.

You think it's my fault that you made multiple public declarations against 'rumors' and your insider information into Avigilon?

Mike, seriously, when you are that wrong, just admit it and move on. You can respond again and drag this out if you want but why?

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If I was talking about Avigilon in this post I would understand but I was not.  You love doing this shit.   It's hysterical.  

Wanna start talking about IPVM rumors? 

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Wanna start talking about IPVM rumors?

Mike, you are welcome to ask or talk about such things. Start a new discussion and link back to it here. We've certainly proven open to talking here about people recommending manufacturers not talk to us or canceling membership so we are open to criticism.

As for 'rumors', like what you just did in this thread with Hanwha, when I comment it is based on direct conversations with executives at companies directly involved. The fact that you evidently had no executive connections with any of the 70 bidders (while I had numerous) should have given you pause about publicly throwing out rumors.

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John, I didn't start a rumor I just agreed with 2 other undisclosed posts.   Why are you not spanking UD posters for starting it? 

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4... but it makes no sense.

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Why would you pump $100 million into new manufacturing plant if you were going to sell? Can't help the balance sheet.

Hanwha Techwin Invests $100M in Its New Subsidiary in Vietnam

 

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Mother ship can no longer feed the non-profit business unit.  Time to cut the cord.......

Competing against the likes of Dahua and Hikvision put a strain on their profit margin.

Since there will be no deep pocket to offset their negative profit, they will need to tighten up their belts which will put a strain on the sales and might risk their morale.

Lets watch who and who will start leaving......

Hope this will not be the case on continue to be successful.

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Mother ship can no longer feed the non-profit business unit. Time to cut the cord.......

The 'mother ship' still owns it so if it was not making money they could just stop investing in it, like how Schneider Electric did to Pelco.

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While I am no insider or savant, on the surface, this seems like a for sale sign in the front yard. By spinning off, you neatly divide employees, assets, etc for a clean sale.

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On the surface, if you wanted to get rid of something, you would not give it your main brand, i.e., it would not be sensible to call the security business 'Hanwha Techwin' when Techwin is the main overarching brand for 2 decades. It would seem more of a signal of strength to do that.

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Edit: I had originally posted this thinking it was describing the current reorg, but its from 4-28-2017.

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Hanwha has been hinting at this since last Spring, after it announced an earlier restructuring:

Hanwha Technwin is expected to go aggressive in investment in the overseas market after the reorganization. “Operating too many non-core businesses has hindered Hanwha Techwin from making bold investment decisions,” said a senior official from the company.

The official added that the company is mulling a plan to split and list the security business later, but that would not happen any time soon.

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Any indication of how big Hanwha Techwin Security is compared to Hanwha's overall business?

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Hanwha overall is ~$40 billion, according to Forbes. Hanwha Techwin Security is in the $500 or $600 million range (see IPVM revenue directory).

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The restructuring would not / will not deter me.

We just had Hanwha in our office today.  I do think they may be going places.  To me, Samsung Techwin always seemed to be exploring / feeling out the market.  I do not get that same feeling with Hanwha.  The rep was knowledgeable and excited about the product.  To me, that seems to be a rare combo in sales reps.  

They definitely seemed to have their sights set squarely on Avigilon.  This may be due to the omnipresent nature of Avigilon in our geographic region.

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Are you in the NW US?

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Midwest

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Update: a statement from Hanwha Techwin addressing the questions raised. They say they are profitable and not for sale. The statement in full below:

The purpose of the captive spinoff is to allow the security division to operate more independently and be more responsive to the market. Under the current structure, the security business did not have much in common with the other Techwin companies; aircraft and robotics and thus, did not share any common technologies, customers or production methods.

Hanwha Techwin security is a profitable business with its sights set on becoming the leading manufacturer in video surveillance. Hanwha has made significant investments in various areas of the security business over the past 18 months including manufacturing, technology and human resources. We invested over $100M in a Vietnam facility in order to increase production and produce products more cost effectively. We continue to invest in our core business including optical barrel assembly, hardware design and SoC development. Our strategy is to continue to invest in technology development, partnerships and expansion. There are no plans to sell the security business and the focus for Hanwha Techwin is continued growth under this new, independent management system.

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[IPVM Note: Not a Hanwha employee]

In our vertical, Hanawa is taking more market share. Users are wary of Hik & Dahua but don't want to pay up for Axis. Most are impressed with their image quality, and I don't hear any complaints about them breaking. Hopefully they stick with the branding as all the "name" changes confused the market and blunted some earlier momentum 

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Regarding the "Middle Option" section, I'm not sure that Axis is more advanced than Hanwha at this point.  When you look at speed to market with marketable new tech, Hanwha has been quicker than Axis lately.  

As I write this, I'm specifically thinking of things like those mentioned in the Competitive Positioning section, like sound classification analytics, PTZ handoff, and H.265.  These are stories that our buyers enjoy hearing, and we've been selling more Hanwha than Axis for a few years now.  We have to keep Axis happy and in the product mix for a few different reasons, but at our place nearly everyone prefers Hanwha.

Maybe the argument is that Axis image or feature quality is better, but it seems like the battle of who is "most advanced" isn't so clear.  

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Have you deployed any of the sound classification analytics?  

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Yes, but don't get too excited - all that "deploying" it means in this case is that we turned it on in the camera, and gave it a way to report back to the command center.  

The X and P ranges have this feature.  You turn it on by checking a box, you pick what behavior you want when a detection is made, and you're done.

All the customer demos have gone well, but the gunshot is the real attraction, and I'm glad to say I have no experience with one of these cameras trying to detect a real gunshot in their environment.  

With that said, we're planning a trip into the country with a Veracity Pointsource once the weather warms up.  :)

EDIT:  Yes, we're nerds.

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Yea I ordered 6 Hanwha cameras to test and so far I am most impressed with the XNV-6085.  Great low light quality and PTRZ so all you have to do is mount the camera and everything else is done in the web GUI. Testing the audio analytics is next on my list and I have a couple of techs that are excited to test the gunshot detection. 

One thing I haven't figured out yet is can you have the audio analytics on but DO NOT have the audio record.  

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Yes definitely.  It's a menu inside the camera, completely separate from any recording.

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Yes, it is possible to monitor with audio analytics only without recording the audio itself or even being able to listen in, relevant audio is simply treated as an alarm event.  Alternatively, the on-board microphone can also be used to both monitor and record audio, but this feature must be enabled in another menu.

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Awesome thank you!

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That's interesting to hear. I have to say I am testing a Wisenet X series camera in my office right now. The image quality is OK, most of the camera analytics seem to work OK. Nothing about it blows me away. It just seems like a good camera. 

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#10, good feedback, I think there are 2 issues here - (1) selling Axis vs Hanwha, and (2) new tech of Axis vs Hanwha.

On (1), I can certainly see the appeal of selling Hanwha over Axis, for many products (especially mid-market), the quality is roughly the same and Hanwha's price is less. To that end, selling more Hanwha than Axis is sensible.

But on (2), Axis has lots of its own tech and vast range of products. Off the top of my head, the laser focus PTZ, the various intercoms (now including 2N), more multi-imagers, the Z-Wave PTZ, the advanced device manager, dozens of ACAP applications, new line of positioning cameras, new low cost thermal, etc., etc.

Of the 3 you mention, we probably would agree that H.265 is the biggest 'story' and if I was selling Hanwha I would certainly use that as a point against Axis. VMS support for H.265 has improved, so H.265's main barrier is falling (which was a problem a year ago for Hanwha). There are still issues with CPU load decoding, risks about licensing and smart H.264 is quite strong by itself, but H.265 is here. If Axis does not roll out H.265 in 2018 they will have a marketing problem.

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Hanwha is biting the heals of Axis.

Hanwha has a laser focus PTZ coming soon and even more exciting is the PNM-7000VD that's scheduled for release this May. It uses two 2MP sensor domes on a single housing. The two lens modules are interchangeable with 2.4, 2.8, 3.6 and 6mm lens options. MSRP of $1100 for the camera and $75 for each lens module.

Hanwha press release   

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That's good! The more manufacturers releasing more new products is better for the industry.

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A peer standardized to an AXIS camera. I pulled a camera into my test environment and compared results with my XND HANWHA camera. I wanted to make sure I was making the right decision for my organization. HANDS DOWN - the imagery and motion capture on the HANWHA was superior to the AXIS camera. Folks concentrate on pixel counts, WDR, Analytics, etc. These are all great features, which many cameras have. But ultimately if your camera can not capture moving images then you do not have an affective camera. We configure our cameras to record low Frames Per Seconds because we do not need 30fps. We stay at anywhere from 2fps to 10fps. If your camera is only recording one good image of a moving object out of every 4 images you have problems. HANWHA gives almost 100% capture...for me - that IS GOLD.

I do not know what the future holds for HANWHA. All I can do is hope they keep innovating and keep doing much of what they have been doing.

about me - I've been in the industry for 29 years. I've seen our technology evolve throughout the years. This is the first camera I am confident about.

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#MeToo

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Did you adjust exposure, gain, compression in either camera or did you leave them as defaults? 

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All lighting configurations were tuned. Exposure was tuned... and not all cameras allow you to tune the exposure-these two did. I actually am "anal" about the max exposure and make sure it is a multiple of the frame rate we are recording. Test was conducted in a well lit office space. When I test I give all products a fare chance to succeed. If I didn't want to know the true results, why then even do the test.

I just saw another question about which camera I tested. I do not recall the AXIS model. Pricing was comparable. I have always complained about "ghosting" or "feathering" of moving images so finding a camera which was reasonably priced and captured great imagery made me a happy camper.

I compared cameras, and I validated my choice. I am not here to defend HANWHA, I am just expressing my opinion and the fact I think HANWHA has been on a good path. I haven't even commented on how much my INFOSEC peers like the security on the cameras.

I prefer the XND8080 cameras. If you believe there is a comparable AXIS camera I should test against, call it out and I will test. IPVM did a good shoot out. I do not have the conditions the cameras were tested in, we are a financial institution with static lighting at the majority of our cameras with dynamic lighting at entry points and window lines. So its all relevant.

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Thanks for the info.  It would be helpful to know both model numbers of the cameras you tested. 

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Ill 2nd this. I had a conversation with an End User recently who said he was embarrassed of his Axis camera he had deployed after seeing a demo of a new Amcrest camera, and now swears by this brand. Turns out, his Axis was a 6 or so year old M3204 bought at around $400, and the Amcrest is a recent 4MP Dahua OEM, sub $300. But still, he was convinced Amcrest was a far superior "brand" than Axis because of this comparison. I chose not to fight this fight. 

*Posting UD as we are Gold Partner of both Axis and Hanwha... Unfortunately not Amcrest

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I'm curious, which Axis camera were you comparing to which Hanwha camera?

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