Hikvision Major OEM LTS Now Distributing Hikvision

By: John Honovich, Published on Apr 12, 2017

In a rare move, one of Hikvision's top North American OEMs, LTS, has become a Hikvision distributor, as demonstrated in LTS' ISC West booth:

In this note, we examine what is happening and the competitive dynamics impacting Hikvision and LTS.

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Comments (34)

LTS is a big brand, no doubt, they have done well building their brand. I just wonder how many people really dont know they are Hikvision manufactured products. My guess is not many. Now their really wont be a question.

BTW, I dont think they are owned partially by Hikvision. Atleast they didnt use to be. I think at one time they carried dahua products.

Isn't this like a reverse ADI move, with their wHik Box line expansion?

 

I just spoke to my LTS rep. They said that they aren't actually going to be selling Hikvision branded stuff. This was more around the idea that they aren't going to hide the fact that their products are Hikvision now. Their cameras would still be LTS labeled. I'm curious to know if anyone has heard that LTS will actually be selling Hikvision branded equipment now. 

An LTS person I spoke with at ISC West specifically said they would be selling Hikvision-branded product as well as LTS product.  I will see if I can get more/better clarification.

I also spoke with an LTS sells rep this morning and he stated they were waiting on prices for HikVision product. 

To clarify, it sounds like LTS maybe selling some Hikvision stuff like alarm panels that will be coming out soon but their cameras will still be LTS. But it does sound like this could be clarified by LTS and Hikvision to know what is really going on. 

LTS still remains somewhat of a mystery. Even their own employees have little idea who is in charge or who is even in the other offices... Industry rumors vary from a Hong Kong owner to that they are actually owned partially by Hikvision itself.

Intrepid but long forgotten reporting from IPVM sleuth Marty Major indicates LTS was related to Shenzhen Brovision.

 

Maybe LTS is Hik's next acquisition?

Ever notice how close the California offices are.

Note: 2 points we do not know but likely will have an impact is:

  • How much lower will the margins be for Hikvision vs LTS branded ones?  The lower the margins the more likely LTS will advocate LTS branded over Hikvision ones.
  • How will sales people commission rates for Hikvision vs LTS branded differ? If it is significantly less, this will reinforce sales people advocating LTS customers to go for Hikvision.

These types of dynamics make such a distribution deal for an existing OEM quite strange.

This seems to be the year for strange partnerships.  Sony and Bosch is an odd, possibly unprecedented one as well.

My guess is that they are running into the same thing we have. Some customers just like to buy the products with the brand name on it. They like the idea of having Hikvision the company support their products. ADI and Tri-ed are selling the branded stuff for about the same as the OEM guys. So my guess is that they have lost some customers to branded product. We have over the years as well. It is becoming increasingly more difficult to sell Hik OEM when the customer can get the branded version for the same price and sometimes a longer warranty. Luckily we have the branding program to differentiate ourselves and make us unique to encourage customer retention.

Not to mention, Hikvision USA are basically salesmen for ADI and Tri-ed. We had some issues where they actually quoted against us for one of our established customers, slightly undercut us to win the bid. The Hik USA salesman knew we were hik oem as well, i assume he was commission hungry. I called my Hik rep and the issue was immediately taken care of, but im curious how much more it has happened without me knowing. Luckily my customer was cool enough to tell me that. 

Sean, thanks for sharing.

I wonder if it is LTS pushing to distribute Hikvision or if it is Hikvision pushing LTS to carry their branded products. 

The Hik USA salesman knew we were hik oem as well, i assume he was commission hungry.

But the Hikvision USA salesman quota is only Hikvision branded sales, correct? His incentives are to sell his branded products not OEMed products that go through a different division, yes/no?

Correct. I just figured he would have been more respectful of a company carrying the mother brand and would have backed off from quoting my customer. He wasnt though, but once i talked to my hik rep which is a higher up than he was, the issue was resolved, my customer never heard back from the hik sales rep.

Sean, thanks.

That's a fascinating example.

By definition, the larger Hikvision USA gets, the more often these intra-Hikvision sales conflicts will occur, as long as the Hikvision OEMs remain - a strange situation...

another logical explination is Hikvision trying to diversify their distributor portfolio, to prevent one of them to become too strong

My LTS rep told me today that they are only selling Hikvision high end and specialty equipment. Prices will be available around the first of May. She also said that the LTS branded equipment will still be their main priority but Hik offers products that will fill in holes in their line. It was more cost effective to do this than spend money on having LTS branded on specialty items that are not sold frequently.

#8, thanks, that sounds like a plausible explanation, though it seems that different LTS reps have different stories.

If LTS is willingly bring in Hikvision branded products, that's still quite a risk as that type of approach would be signaling to LTS customers that Hikvision is the better / more sophisticated offering than LTS, with LTS simply relabeling the lower end Hikvision offering. 

My rep is from the "home" office in New Jersey. She seems to always be ahead of the game with info.

I called three different LTS offices and received various explanations. One branch said they just don't sell Hikvision at all, another branch sad they may sell it in the future and the third said they will sell it in the future.

Also one immediately said they were OEMing Hikvision however, another branch said that while they got their products from the same warehouse, LTS uses their own firmware and that their quality and pricing was better.

My point here is not to say that any of them are right or wrong but to show how disjointed and contradictory the individual reps responses are.

HIK has more pressure form US government, and if all sales from branding and from US office, more taxes will be submitted to US government, and US government will have less pressure to HIK because of taxes increasing, lol

I saw this at the booth in Vegas and talked with one of their sales reps - just to appease my curiosity because their products looked a lot like HikVision and even their colors tended to remind me of that.   The rep said they were selling their own products, and also HikVision.   With prices already so low across the market, I'm not going to give up on my distributor to save a couple bucks with someone else, but it was interesting to talk to them none-the-less.

LTS offered a sale on Hikvision products this week:

LTS is now selling regular Hikvision products directly on its website including, of course, promos / discounts, see example below:

how is pricing compared to ADI?

Update: LTS is actively recruiting Hikvision dealers here:

And LTS is getting in on this month's "ALL HIKVISION PRODUCTS" on sale...

Probably a good strategic move on LTS part. They are using Hikvision for brand marketing awareness, then will slowly switch the Hik dealers to LTS brand products where the dealers will pay alot less for the same equipment and LTS gets more margin.

slowly switch the Hik dealers to LTS brand products where the dealers will pay alot less for the same equipment and LTS gets more margin.

That strikes me as a reasonable tactic by LTS. However, if they are successful, how will Hikvision respond to that? Will Hikvision be ok or will Hikvision want its own branded products led with? Hikvision has not hired 300, 400 people in NA and would presumably want those sales under their brand, not LTS.

im not sure, I think either way its a win for Hikvision as a whole. Hikvision USA will be just fine with ADI and Tri-ed moving boxes. Adding LTS is just another sales channel.

 

I agree it is a win for Hikvision. Ultimately, Hikvision has the power in this relationship since there are far less true manufacturers than distributors (especially given how dependent LTS is on Hikvision).

Also, LTS is now explicitly promoting sales of 3rd party brands, which is a shift in its identification:

That can be read that Hikvision is more trustworthy than LTS but not sure if that is LTS' intent here.

New LTS / Hikvision marketing video. Both ignore that LTS has been selling Hikvision rebranded for years.

Hikvision says LTS distributing Hikvision's brand elevates Hikvision's brand:

Update:LTS's new Q3/Q4 public catalog is touting that LTS sells "ALL" Hikvision products:

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