ACTi comes to America for IP market

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Sunday, January 1, 2006

SEATTLE--ACTi Corp. is the latest Asian manufacturer to enter the United States security market after opening an office here in the fall, with plans to add a warehouse and hire additional employees in 2006.
The manufacturer of IP-based surveillance equipment has been around for two and one-half years, serving Asia, Europe and the United States from its office in Taipei, Taiwan. By adding an office in Seattle, company officials expect to better serve the U.S. security market and increase its market share here.
"We expect to be well over $1 million in sales next year," said Chad Cooper, director of U.S. sales for ACTi Corp., about projected sales for the United States. The company currently reports worldwide sales of $4.5 million and employs 60 people in Taiwan.
What sets ACTi Corp. apart from other Taiwanese security product manufacturers is its approach. Instead of going to market by offering products for another company to private label, it is coming to the market itself.
"It is a little bit unique, because a lot of the Taiwanese companies become an OEM supplier," said Cooper.
ACTi Corp. currently offers a full line of IP surveillance products, including IP servers, cameras, transcoders, hybrid DVR cards and software. The line includes approximately 35 products, according to Cooper, who expects to add another 10 variations to the product line in 2006.
Part of the reason the security industry is seeing an influx of Chinese and Taiwanese companies is because many manufacturers traditionally focused on improvement in lenses, durability, housing and camera versatility, said Steve Hunt, president of 4A International, a research and consulting firm focused on the convergence of physical security with IT.
"By being hardware-focused, the industry opened up a world of competition from low-cost mass producers around the world," he said.
Cooper said ACTi Corp. expects to quickly build its reputation in the United States. The company has already hired several manufacturer representative firms throughout the country and is now working on signing agreements with distributors.