Bosch completes Philips CSI buy

Sunday, December 1, 2002

LANCASTER, Pa. - Bosch Security Systems in late October completed its acquisition of camera manufacturer Philips CSI and announced plans to begin branding Philips CSI products under the Bosch name.

Finalization of the deal comes two months after Bosch said it planned to buy the camera company, which operates in 35 countries and employs 1,300 people. In North America, Philips CSI operates its headquarters and manufacturing facility here, and employs a total of 300 people.

"We view the CCTV market as one of the most important areas as it is growing the fastest and has gained more importance over the last year," said Peter Ribinski, president and chief executive officer of Bosch Security Systems.

The acquisition is one of three North American deals for the German conglomerate, which marked its entrance into this security market last year with its purchase of Detection Systems and Radionics. Both of those companies now bear the Bosch name, which Philips CSI has also adopted.

"All of a sudden we're part of a big security group, not just a CCTV group," said Robert Smulders, vice president of sales and marketing CCTV. Smulders expects the company will benefit by being part of a firm that will focus on the security market.

That focus could mean additional acquisitions in the near future and significant new product launches. Ribiniski said the company's growth goal for next year is 15 percent, not an easy feat since intrusion and fire is only growing at a three to four percent rate.

Jack Mallon, managing director of Mallon Capital, said with this acquisition Bosch Security now covers the security market fairly well, with only a minor holes, such as in the access control market. "They have the basic, core coverage," he said. "It's just a question of filing in a couple of other slots."

Over the next years, plans call for Bosch to sell all the inventoried products with the Philips CSI brand name. After that, camera products will carry the Bosch name in some fashion, said Ribiniski.

In the meantime, Bosch officials plan to begin promoting its camera and CCTV equipment under the Bosch name in marketing material.

"The market at this point talks about Bosch already and it's easier to do it at this point in time rather than to wait," said Ribinski.