Interview with Mr. Mehernosh Pithawalla
How the market for security systems has evolved in India? How are you innovating your product portfolio to meet the expectations of new age customer?
Despite widespread awareness of the high crime rate across the country, the proactive adoption of security solutions is still at the nascent stages. Many developing countries have far better adoption rates than our country. Nonetheless, the security solutions’market growth has started picking pace. With the entry of organised players, the market is evolving. The unorganised market, however, still includes fly-by-night operators who sell CCTVs, alarm systems,door sensors and video phones imported various markets and they do not meet the security standards.
The growth of the home security system market can be attributed to the emergence of new technologies such as IoT and wireless technologies, and increasing consumer awareness. Moreover, the integration of AI in home security systems, and the advent of DIY, Plug-and-play systems are creating renewed interest among consumers to adopt home security solutions.
At Godrej Security Solutions, we have always been a leader in introducing innovative products in the country. From launching the world’s first personal digital locker to a plug-and-play home security alarm system that syncs with over 40 sensors, we have led the category innovation since the launch of the first home safe in 1902.
We have adopted an incremental innovation approach for all our product range as per the preferences of new age consumers. We have introduced technologically advanced products across categories such as home safes, personal lockers, home cameras, video door phones etc. We recently launched EVE home cameras that allow homeowners to stay connected with their loved ones regardless of where they are in the world. The next phase of our innovation will be to introduce motion based recording and face recognition. In effect, the home camera will be able to differentiate between the legit homeowner and those who do not have access. This system will be able to intelligently conclude whether to inform the homeowner and start recording or to ignore and go on a sleep mode based on face recognition and motion sensor.
We will also be introducing consumer IoT based security solutions aimed at bringing smart life into the actual world. This will require a lot of integration and interoperability among the devices and sensors that will eventually lead to a complete, trustworthy home automation system.
Tell us about the different products you have for the different real estate asset classes?Which asset class you see most potential in?
Godrej Security Solutions (GSS) majorly offers security products in the following three categories:
- Physical security products which include products for banking and non-banking clients
- Retail which includes products for B2C and small & medium business and hospitality
- Premises security solutions
The diverse range of security products offered by Godrej Security Solutions include technologically advanced home safes, home alarm systems, video door phones, cameras with analytics, substance detectors (bomb, bulletsand narcotics), X-ray baggage scanners, biometrics and access control systems, burglary and fire resistant safesetc.
We have an array of solutions catering to premises security and institutional security. This includes a range of Eyetrace CCTV and DVRs (Digital Video Recorder) crafted for different needs and specifications. The remote surveillance system helps you to monitor your premises accurately We also offer VigiGuard flap barriers and turnstiles that ensuresecurity and crowd management at the entrance in areas where the high pedestrian flow is a challenging task. We are witnessing an uptick in the market for both institutional and home security solutions.
Which segment- entry-mid or niche has maximum demand in today’s market?
Our torch and tool resistant home safes, personal digital locker (Goldilocks), plug-and-play home security alarm system – Eagle-I, Wifi enabled DIY home cameras – EVE, and video door phones range SeeThru have been receiving great response from the market. Conventionally, BFSI and retail and jewellery sectors have been key contributors to our sales revenue. However, now our range of access control, surveillance and monitoring and torch and tool resistant safes are also gaining significant inroads to the buzzing MSME sector.
With reference to the adoption of security solutions, India market is yet to reach the maturity levels. With security solutions such as CCTV, video door phones becoming a necessary amenity at all leading realty projects, consumers are now showing willingness to adopt home security solutions to ensure peace of mind. Hence, we see that the demand for the entry andthe mid-level segment is gaining traction.
Tell us about the market trends you are witnessing in this space?
One of the key trends that areon the rise is the increase in demand for Do-it-Yourself (DIY) security systems for people who prefer to use a plug-and-play system and don’t want to go through the hassle of installation. We recently launched EVE Series home cameras with a range of features including wi-ficonnectivity, video streaming to smartphones, infrared night vision, and bi-directional communication feature. With mobile connectivity becoming a critical feature, we have introduced safes and systems that immediately alert homeowners on their smartphones. We are continually developing products that are IoT based since the technology has gained a firm foothold amongst consumers.
What is your market share in the security systems market?
The security solutions marketplace in India is highly fragmented between the organised and unorganised players. Within the organised space we have a majority share in the electronic home security space. In home safes category we command around 80% of the market.
Tell us about your international export business?
Godrej Security Solutions besides serving the domestic market exports to over 45 countries including the Middle East, South Asia, East Africa, the US, Europe and SAARC countries.
Business opportunities that Godrej Security Solutions sees in Indian real estate space? Which region does best for you?
Real estate sector is a crucial driver for our business. Security solutions such as video door phones (VDP) have become a standard amenity offered by most developers as the customers are becoming more conscious of additional value-addedbenefits provided with new homes. With the Indian real estate sector poised for a revival, we expect our business for security solutions such as video door phones, CCTV cameras to also grow significantly. Growth in the number of smart cities would further add to the demand for electronic security.
Metro cities have traditionally been the biggest market for us. At the same time, Tier II cities are also showing great potential regardingthe adoption of security solutions. As stated earlier, we see the upcoming smart cities as another avenue of growth for us.In general, the home safe’s adoption in India is nearly 3%. Therefore, there is an excellent scope for growth in both rural and urban markets.
Growth rate witnessed by Godrej Security Solutions in B2B & B2C segments and plans for both.
We expect the business to grow in a healthy 18-25% CAGR in the coming times. While B2B businesshas been a significant contributor to our business, the B2C business has been witnessing a higher growth rate owing to the low market base.
New products/ innovations in the offing.
We aimto make homes smart, stylish and safe by remote monitoring. We have developed surveillance systems, smart access solutions and individual apartment security solutions with IP multi-apartment video door phones.We have led the industry through our design-led innovation, and in the coming few years there would be several path-breaking products which we would introduce in the market.
Tell us about your business strategy and plans for the coming year.
We are focusing on home security segment to increase its revenue in the next three years. In India, the home security market is still at a nascent stage at the moment. In the next three years, we aresignificantly ramp up revenue from this segment. WThrough Project Vistaar, we are aiming channel expansion – targeting to expand our reach to 250 districts by 2019.