The new OnSSI embraces a world vision

April 16, 2015
With the acquisition of SeeTec, the company is positioned for multi-national growth and enhanced product development

With the announcement last week that On-Net Surveillance Systems, Inc. (OnSSI) had signed a definitive agreement to acquire SeeTec AG, a privately held German-based company providing VMS solutions to European markets, both OnSSI President and CTO Gadi Piran and Vice President of Sales and Marketing Ken LaMarca saw the company stake its flag solidly in the multi-national market.

SeeTec, a European pioneer provider of network-based video management applications, now combines its own the strengths of customer-targeted solutions that align with customer requirements and industry-specific processes with the strengths of OnSSI’s industry-leading scalable and efficient Ocularis VMS platform. The acquisition helps OnSSI take advantage of SeeTec’s advanced logistics suite of products that will benefit both end users and channel partners.

“This acquisition is important for our growth, diversification and global presence strategies”, said Gadi Piran, OnSSI’s President and CTO in a recent press release. “SeeTec is highly regarded in European markets for its software development, client services and outstanding customer relationships. They will continue to provide these services locally, while working together with OnSSI to expand globally. I could not ask for a better partner than SeeTec to grow and deliver increased value to OnSSI customers.”

Piran added that the combination of OnSSI’s strong position in many vertical markets and SeeTec’s focus on video-based business and logistics add-on modules will create strong VMS solutions across multiple vertical markets.      

LaMarca, a longtime video security executive, understands that expanding market share overseas in the light of recent competitor acquisitions was the right move for OnSSI. The acquisition of SeeTec also allows OnSSI to build in features and functionality into new releases of its Ocularis offering that play off the new company’s strengths.

“SeeTec has a very robust product, much like OnSSI, with a recorder, a base and a client – not a master-slave thing like a lot of our competitors. So when we took a look at the potential acquisition, we saw that they have an extensive presence in Europe and we don’t; we have the presence in the US and they have none; so we figured this could be interesting,” LaMarca said. “When you consider the recent acquisition of Milestone by Canon, you’d have to be crazy not to be concerned about that. We obviously need to protect our interests. When we launch the Ocularis 5 product we will be building in the SeeTec recorder. This allows us to add some features and efficiencies we couldn’t otherwise. The SeeTec recorder is feature-rich and efficient in cases of camera detection. It also decides very efficiently where and how video should be stored to the point where it can actually increase storage capacity almost 80 percent. Today’s VMS’s can function very much like a PSIM and Ocularis has that type of functionality.”

LaMarca is quick to point out that strong industry partnerships they have with companies like Milestone will not change. He admitted they are key strategic partners moving into the future.

“Even though we will be building the SeeTec recorder into Ocularis 5, you can be sure we have no intention of doing anything detrimental with our relationship with Milestone. In fact, Ocularis 4.2, which will also be released at the show this week (ISC West in Las Vegas), uses the Milestone recorder. We have every intention of continuing down the path with Milestone, as well as introducing our own recorders to give customers a choice,” LaMarca said.

He added that with the consolidation of other companies, OnSSI just wanted to make sure it was in good shape when it came to providing the best possible customer options. “Recorders are really just a commodity. The feature set and brains need to reside in the management server/software and not the recorder,” said LaMarca. “This provides the open architecture structure so important to OnSSI.

SeeTec is almost a German mirror image of us when it comes to company size, mission and product. The have great software developers and we will play to each other’s strength. They will continue to produce and push their VMS brand in Europe, but we will be using their recorder in our solution here in the U.S. This acquisition allows us to present much more of a global presence now to our multinational customers, and also allows us to extend our customers services hours since we will cross-train each other on our respective products.”

Beyond the mirror images of the two newly joined companies, it was also important that each shared similar visions of future growth and development. In the end LaMarca conceded this may be the strongest bond of all.

“One of the things we have always heard from customers is that we have a great reputation in North America, but you can’t help us in Europe – we heard that from end user and system integration clients,” he said. “So now this partnership allows us to level the playing field with other multi-national VMS competitors. In the mid-term this allows us the opportunity to develop simple, powerful and independent product and continue to serve the enterprise-level marketplace. That is our vision for the future as the new OnSSI.”

About the Author

Steve Lasky | Editorial Director, Editor-in-Chief/Security Technology Executive

Steve Lasky is a 34-year veteran of the security industry and an award-winning journalist. He is the editorial director of the Endeavor Business Media Security Group, which includes the magazine's Security Technology Executive, Security Business, and Locksmith Ledger International, and the top-rated website He is also the host of the SecurityDNA podcast series.Steve can be reached at [email protected]