IP-based video upgrade

Cisco signs 10-year deal with Harrah’s for security, more
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Tuesday, July 1, 2008

SAN JOSE, Calif.--Cisco announced in May a 10-year strategic agreement with Harrah’s Entertainment to upgrade their management, guest services and security systems through the use of IP technology. The Cisco Physical Security business unit will work with Harrah’s on a “transformation of the company’s digital backbone and the implementation of a next-generation security and surveillance infrastructure.”

According to Steve Collen, director of business development for Cisco Physical Security, Cisco video surveillance will initially be installed at 31 Harrah’s properties across the United States, Macau and Canada, including such high-profile properties as Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas.

“When we entered the market with the Sypixx acquisition,” Collen said, “we wanted to focus heavily on gaming as an initial market, and we’ve been focusing on that for the past two years. This is the ultimate validation that the focus has been worth it. We are winning a lot of casino environments across the globe, which is a testament to what we are doing.”

However, the 10-year agreement, which Collen said is beyond the scope of anything he’s seen in his 14 years at Cisco, goes well beyond security. Cisco will deploy a new network infrastructure throughout the properties that will allow Harrah’s to deliver a number of new guest services and allow them to deploy targeted digital signage and utilize video conferencing among Harrah’s executives.

“It was interesting in this deal to see that [Harrah’s chief information officer] and IT team worked very well with the physical security guys,” Collen said.

Cisco had an existing relationship with Harrah’s selling them network infrastructure, Collen said, and this deal is typical of how they’d like to build their video surveillance and security presence.