Q&A | November 7, 2013

As-a-Service Business Model Is A Game Changer For Security

By Bernadette Wilson, associate editor, Business Solutions magazine
Follow Me On Twitter @bernadeditor

BSM-IP Camera Retail

The as-a-Service business model is emerging in the channel for VARs and integrators selling security and video surveillance products.  “It really has the potential to be a game changer,” says Tony Sorrentino, president of ScanSource Security.

Consider, for example, a small retail store or coffee shop where there is a need for only two to four cameras — and where there is a lack of up-front capital for a complete solution. Through an MSP (managed service provider) offering a hosted solution, the retailer pays per channel for video — perhaps $30 or $40 per month per channel — and all of the storage is in the cloud, making security solutions more affordable to more businesses.

Sorrentino comments, “We have customers who are focusing efforts on providing these types of solutions. They fundamentally have changed their business from hardware to a recurring monthly revenue model.” He adds, however, that this requires the reseller to think about business differently — providing hardware alone is less of a commitment. “Now you are selling a service and solution. It is a much different way to look at your business.”

Sorrentino also points out that POS VARs who want to expand their businesses should consider video surveillance. “Offering video surveillance is more than just rewinding the video to see what happened. It is a management tool.  Retailers can use it to stay connected remotely and for analytics such as people counting or identifying traffic flow in a store. Having that kind of data can help the end user justify more budget dollars.”

But retail isn’t the only hot market for video surveillance. Sorrentino says many ScanSource customers are earning good profits in the healthcare sector.  They provide video surveillance and access control — a requirement of HIPAA — and design these systems to facilitate monitoring of medications, patients, and employee activity.   

Overall, he says the trend is moving toward one integrator who can meet as many needs as possible — whether it is point of sale, barcoding, video surveillance, or communications.  “At ScanSource we talk a lot about the end user needing one throat to choke. We believe that is where things are heading in the long term.”

Sorrentino spoke to Jameson Publishing and Business Solutions magazine President Jim Roddy in an exclusive Executive-To-Executive interview conducted at the 2013 ScanSource Partner Conference in Austin, TX. You can listen to the entire interview by clicking here

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