Middle East Market Update: UTC Fire & Security
Hayden Hsu | Date:
With so much talk on integration and IP, the Middle East is probably one of the few places in the world that brings out the best qualities of the two in real-life installations. Aside from Dubai, the rest of the United Arab Emirates is booming with Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and Oman in infrastructural development and greenfield commercial projects. While market potential is tremendous, challenges surrounding market access and talent management remain. a&s talks to some of the most active players in the region to find out what's ticking in the region after the 2009 financial crisis and economic slowdown.
UTC Fire & Security
There are many large infrastructural projects in the region in all of the verticals where UTC Fire & Security (UTCFS) is active. Infrastructure protection projects are present everywhere, and hotels and banks continue to be a key focus for us in the commercial sector, while industrial sites and border protection continue to be very important in all countries where oil is present (Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the UAE). Also, the fact that Qatar was chosen to host FIFA's 2022 World Cup will drive a lot of continued investments in the region in the hospitality sector, infrastructure and stadiums.
Industry studies demonstrate the ratio is largely skewed toward IP, with a clear push for the latest and greatest technologies versus the rest of the world. This is driven by an “early-adopter” mentality — wanting the latest and greatest while spurred by the greenfield nature of projects where people are not tied to legacy, analog systems, but build infrastructure from the ground up.
It is not easy to find partners with the right expertise, be it in the region or elsewhere in the world, but we do our best to find them and offer specialized training. UTCFS realized the need for well-trained professionals in the industry early on and established a training center based in Johannesburg, which serves the sub-Saharan region. An additional training center will soon be set up in Bahrain for the Middle East and North Africa. With these state-of-the-art facilities, we reaffirm our commitment to offering training in business management and high-value fire and security skill sets, including fire detection, access control, video surveillance and integrated security systems.