Lessons for Cisco from GE Security's Failure

Author: John Honovich, Published on Nov 11, 2009

A common refrain from industry veterans is how the physical security industry is especially, perhaps uniquely, different and difficult than other markets.

In response to the GE Security acquisition announcement, SSI reflects on the key reason why GE Security failed:

"Like many companies that have tried to enter and succeed in the electronic security business, GE made the fatal mistake of believing it could bend the industry to its whims rather than understand and respect its truly unique nature and pursue it on its own terms. The conglomerate largely ignored the leadership and managerial wisdom that came along with many of the established security brands and businesses acquired earlier this decade, to the point where the great majority of the talented, industry-savvy personnel who came along in those deals jumped ship."

You could swap out GE for Cisco in the paragraph above and make the same basic point (see our background on Cisco's struggles).

In my experience, the structural differences in the physical security market is the hardest thing for smart new entrants to this industry (see our analysis of the top 5 mistakes IT people make in the security industry). Maybe the next new entrant will finally bend the industry to their will but prudence dictates caution in such attempts.

Comments : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports on Failure

Fail: Dahua "Didn't Check The Lux Levels but It Was Dark" on Jul 20, 2018
Dahua UK has been promoting their camera quality on LinkedIn: I, and others, asked what the lux level of the scene was. (background: Lux Rating...
FST Fails on Jul 17, 2018
FST was one of the hottest startups of the decade, selected as the best new product at ISC West 2011 and backed with tens of millions in...
Four Major Outdoor Camera Install Problems on Jun 14, 2018
Over 140 integrators told us the top four camera installation mistakes that lead to unexpected problems and failures. Their comments often...
Stats: IP Camera Dead On Arrival (DOA) Decline, Near Zero on Jun 01, 2018
New IPVM integrator statistics show that IP camera DoA rates have declined with zero dead on arrival units for many integrators and effectively...
Stats: Upgrading Cameras Far More Common Than Replacing Failed Cameras on May 30, 2018
The old saying "If It Ain't Broke, Don't Fix It" does not apply here. New IPVM statistics show that 60% of cameras that are replaced still work but...
ADT Stock Drops 50% Since IPO on May 17, 2018
It has been a brutal 4 months for ADT. They first expected to IPO at ~$18. They IPOed at $14, dropping immediately to $12.39 And now, not even...
Arecont CEO And President Resign on Apr 18, 2018
This is good news for Arecont. Arecont's problems have been well known for years (e.g., most recently Worst Camera Manufacturers 2018 and starting...
Favorite Camera Manufacturers 2018 on Mar 12, 2018
A number of major moves in integrator's favorite camera rankings for 2018: Two manufacturers make major moves up One major manufacturer moves...
Top Video Surveillance Service Call Problems (Statistics) on Feb 28, 2018
In our most recent statistics series, over 150 integrators told IPVM the most common problem their customers have with their video systems....
Why 3VR Failed on Feb 16, 2018
3VR destroyed transformed ~$65 million in VC funding into a $6.9 million exit. The reason they failed is simple. They bet on analytics. They...

Most Recent Industry Reports

Cut Milestone Licensing Costs 80% By Using Hikvision and Dahua NVRs (Tested) on Aug 13, 2018
Enterprise VMS licensing can be quite expensive, with $200 or more per channel common, meaning a 100 camera system can cost $20,000 in VMS...
Nortek Sues SDS, Battle Over Unpaid Bill and Cancelled Lines on Aug 13, 2018
Nortek and SDS legal battle continues. As IPVM reported, SDS sued Nortek alleging bribery and antitrust violation. However, Wave fired back at SDS,...
Uniview Intrusion Analytics and VMD Tested on Aug 13, 2018
IPVM's IP Camera Analytics Shootout featuring Avigilon, Axis, Bosch, Dahua, Hanwha, Hikvision created some ill will with a Uniview distributor who...
ADT Employees Protest ADT CEO on Aug 10, 2018
So many ADT employees were so upset with ADT's CEO speech reported on by IPVM, that ADT's CEO was forced to send a mass email to employees to...
Axis / Avigilon Legal Battle Rises on Aug 09, 2018
In what is shaping up to be high-powered, will-not-back-down battle, Axis and Avigilon are squaring off in multiple legal contests. In 2017, IPVM...
Camera Focusing Tutorial on Aug 09, 2018
A camera's focus is fundamental to quality imaging. Mistakes can cause important problems. In this guide, we explain focus issues and proper...
Dahua Ban Response: NOT Chinese Government Owned on Aug 08, 2018
Dahua has responded to the US Congress passing a US government ban on Dahua and Hikvision's products. While Dahua offered the now standard...
Bad Move: ADT Markets Rival Amazon on Aug 08, 2018
Amazon may be lining up ADT as its next victim but ADT is happy to promote Amazon. Amazon has made major moves recently, including acquiring...
Hikvision PanoVu Mini Tested (Multi-imager + PTZ For ~$500) on Aug 07, 2018
Hikvision has released their first PanoVu Mini multi imager, the PanoVu DS-2PT3326IZ-DE3, with four 1080p imagers, including a PTZ and integrated...

The world's leading video surveillance information source, IPVM provides the best reporting, testing and training for 10,000+ members globally. Dedicated to independent and objective information, we uniquely refuse any and all advertisements, sponsorship and consulting from manufacturers.

About | FAQ | Contact