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Milestone Systems in the Middle East: VMS and AI, cloud growth strategy

Milestone Systems in the Middle East: VMS and AI, cloud growth strategy spoke with Paul Park, Regional Director for Middle East, North Africa and Turkey at Milestone Systems at Intersec Dubai 2024 for insights on the Middle East security market, video management software (VMS) innovations and how the company is responding to evolving security market trends. spoke with Paul Park, Regional Director for Middle East, North Africa and Turkey of Milestone Systems, at Intersec Dubai 2024 for insights on the Middle East security market, video management software (VMS) innovations and how the company is responding to evolving security market trends.

Milestone Systems marked another strong year in the EMEA region in 2023, achieving double-digit growth. The growth can be partly attributed to the region's strong focus on improving infrastructure, security processes, and systems, alongside ongoing geopolitical challenges.

"The Middle East has always been characterized by fairly high security concerns, varying from one country to another. Regional conflicts prompt heightened security measures, particularly among key security-based stakeholders like the Ministries of Interior, Foreign Affairs and Defense as they prioritize defending and protecting their nations and citizens domestically and abroad. This places them on higher alert, making them potentially revisit the solutions and systems in place,” said Park.

Park further noted, “We saw growth across the region. Saudi Arabia grew more for us than any other market. We have an exceptional team and strong partnerships there, and everyone can see the mega projects and the transformation that is taking place. But overall, we grew everywhere. The plan is to maintain this trajectory and see if we can grow at an even faster pace this year.”

Middle East market growth strategy

Building on Milestone Systems’ vision to double its earnings by 2026, Park highlighted Milestone's VMS ability to integrate with third-party solutions and its strong ecosystem of technology partners as core drivers for sustainable company growth in the Middle East region. Case in point: 12 technology partners joined Milestone Systems at their booth this year, including Allied Telesis, Inner Range and Southwest Microwave.

Paul Park, Regional Director,
Middle East, North Africa and Turkey,
Milestone Systems
"One of the greatest things about having an open platform is when partners innovate and come up with new technology. Whether it is facial recognition, access control, advanced video analytics or any other technology, everything gets integrated into Milestone. This results in bigger and better solutions that incorporate all the latest innovations. That is what we are showcasing and trying to achieve,” said Park.

Partners and customers alike can leverage Milestone’s open architecture to build solutions that target varying market requirements in the Middle East in fast-growing verticals: oil and gas, smart and safe cities, education, and health and safety for data-driven security and business insights.

"The city police want something different compared to, for instance, an oil and gas customer. They might be using video analytics to monitor road traffic violations, manage traffic flow and ensure pedestrian safety, aligning with the UAE’s ambition for Dubai to become the safest city in the world. They integrate with emergency response systems, public safety command and control centers, and video surveillance to identify bad guys, maintain public safety, and use blacklists and whitelists,” said Park.

The same technology and platform can be used for completely different use cases. Take, for instance, Milestone’s launch of Hospital Assist for the healthcare vertical. Hospital Assist is a data-driven video and audio technology solution designed to improve patient care and lessen the workload burden of healthcare professionals. Built on the XProtect VMS, the solution allows simultaneous remote monitoring of multiple patients and streamlining of routine tasks and features two-way audio communication and privacy blur.

Major trends for the Middle East security market

The two major trends for the security market in the Middle East in 2024 are AI and cloud. Park elaborated on how Milestone’s product launches are effectively responding to these evolving trends.

Milestone AI bridge

“From a technological perspective, AI is the big thing that people talk about, with its potential to revolutionize a lot of things. However, like with any new technology, customers may feel it is beyond their reach,” said Park. The Milestone AI bridge helps customers access the latest AI technologies easily. The AI bridge is an API gateway to integrate third-party models into Milestone’s VMS by connecting the platform to GPU-accelerated intelligent video analysis (IVA) applications, enabling AI analytics and data-driven insights.

Asmag note: While we are on the topic, Milestone was one the first companies to adopt the G7 Code of Conduct for advanced artificial intelligence systems. Thomas Jensen, CEO at Milestone Systems, recently spoke to about plans to incorporate the European Union AI act into Milestone’s operational framework.

New release: Milestone Kite Camera to Cloud VSaaS

Remaining a notable trend in the Middle East security market, cloud adoption is gaining momentum despite regional concerns over data security and sovereignty. What is important to note in this region is that different projects require different approaches. Milestone’s strategy is to offer customers a range of on-premise, hybrid cloud and cloud-native solutions that can fit varying project requirements, with the Milestone XProtect running on AWS and Milestone Kite video surveillance as a service (VaaS) powered by the Arcules cloud platform.

A new addition to this portfolio (Q1 2024) is the Milestone Kite camera to cloud option that  works with Axis cameras pre-installed with AI-based analytics. “We introduced the ‘camera to cloud’ for direct interconnectivity without a gateway or another layer of storage and processing. This enhancement to the cloud-based option will reduce delays and help customers save on bandwidth,” said Park.

2024 Outlook for the Middle East security market

When asked about Milestone Systems’ outlook for the security market in the coming year, Park commented,“Big growth targets again this year because we did well last year, but we have to be fairly innovative with where the growth is going to come from. It will be about re-analyzing what we did last year and understanding where we can collaborate with our partners and customers to grow the business in the region.”
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