ScadaCam comes home to Pivotal

Sunday, April 1, 2007

MINNEAPOLIS--An investor group has purchased the ScadaCam product line from the publicly held Norwegian support systems firm Powel ASA. Terms of the deal were not released. The new company is now Pivotal Vision, a software manufacturer that will partner with camera maker Cohu and computer maker Microsel to provide remote surveillance solutions for the utility industry, integrating with the SCADA system used to operate most major utilities.
It is a homecoming of sorts for ScadaCam, which was founded here in the Twin Cities, then purchased in 2002 by St. Paul, Minn.-based MiniMax, which was then purchased by Powel in January of 2005. Rob Gornick, ScadaCam's founder, will continue to lead technology development for the new Pivotal Vision, joined by chief executive officer Larry Taylor, chief financial officer Steve Caskey and chief operations officer Jerry Larsen.
"All of us are 30 years each in the utility industries," said Larsen of the management team. "We were on the operations side, seeing the need for security like ScadaCam can provide, now we're on the other side."
The ScadaCam product consists of a camera that, using software and a remote computer, can identify motion and then track the moving target, setting off an alert at a monitoring station and streaming the video. It is this tracking ability paired with IP connectivity and SCADA integration that Larsen feels is unique to the industry. Its primary use so far has been at remote electric company substations, and Larsen said Pivotal would continue to sell direct to utility companies.
However, for other potential industries, Pivotal will be constructing a dealer channel. Larsen said that a familiarity with SCADA would not be necessary to install the product, which is in some ways similar to the Longwatch product designed to serve water utilities (search "Longwatch," at
"They don't need the SCADA background because once it gets plugged in, we manage it remotely," said Larsen.