Hanwha Techwin finding its own identity

Investment in new Wisenet 5 chipset, $100m Vietnam facility shows company’s commitment to innovation
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Wednesday, June 28, 2017

TEANECK, N.J.—Hanwha Techwin, a global supplier of solutions for IP and analog video surveillance, continues to build on the momentum created with the unveiling earlier this year of its new in-house developed Wisenet 5 chipset, and the announcement of plans to open a new $100 million manufacturing facility in Vietnam.

Miguel Lazatin, director of product and channel marketing, North America, said that the key differentiator for the company is its ability to develop in-house technology.

“A lot of companies outsource components, but we actually manufacture a lot of components that we use in our products,” Lazatin told Security Systems News. “Whereas a lot of manufacturers just use the chipsets that are available on the market, we invested approximately $30 million to develop our new Wisenet 5 chipset technology, which is the brains behind the camera as it controls things like wide dynamic range, high light compensation, noise reduction, on-board analytics, etc.”

Another big investment for the company is a planned $100 million Vietnam factory, which is targeted to be completed in 2018.

“There aren’t too many companies within security that are making those types of investments for their security business,” said Lazatin, who noted that the Vietnam manufacturing facility will be dedicated only to producing security products. “This speaks to our commitment to security, video surveillance and what we are looking to do in the future, so it will increase our capacity by about 8 million units per year,” he said.

The facility in Vietnam, which is a trade compliant country, will also support the addition of products to the company’s GSA schedule, according to Lazatin. “One of our key strategies is with our GSA contract, so in terms of TAA-compliant products, we have more than 140 models that are being uploaded to our GSA schedule,” he said.

The tremendous growth of the company over the past few years is based on its ability to produce products cost efficiently, and the commitment from leadership within Hanwha, the parent company that acquired Samsung. Overall, Lazatin said the company has been growing at a rate of approximately 30 percent year-over-year.

“Hanwha has a lot of resources as one of the largest corporations, conglomerates in South Korea, and is fully behind this business, this division, and so we benefit from the resources that are available in the parent company in order to reinvest into security,” said Lazatin.

In regard to branding the Hanwha Techwin name in North America, “We are making a very concerted effort to develop very strong visual branding guidelines and a visual branding identity, so the orange and the gray border, and trying to be more consistent with our communications about who we are as a company,” said Lazatin, noting that he is excited to move beyond the Samsung name.

“We have such a great story to tell here about Hanwha—the technological expertise, the in-house development of technology, the resources that we have—so, our goal is to sell the value and tell the story of Hanwha,” he said. “On the cameras, we are removing Samsung and will be using Wisenet, the sub-brand, and that will continue as the company rolls out new products this year and into 2018.”

And internally, the company continues to enhance the organization, including adding people in sales, product development and marketing.

“We will continue to make investments in personnel, and continue to grow the organization both organically and potentially through acquisitions,” said Lazatin. “We have very aggressive targets for sales and where we want to be in the market, and plan to be the top manufacturer in a few years.”