Guardian Eye, a Vivica Group company that offers remote CCTV monitoring, access control and industrial control systems, has acquired Internet of Things (IoT) as-a-service provider, Activate Group. The aim is to combine the expertise of Activate with the scale of Vivica to accelerate the deployment of IoT technologies across several sectors in South Africa.
Founded in 2011, Activate Group is a founding member of the IoT Industry Council, which promotes technical excellence and the adoption of best practices and standards in order to drive uptake of the technology in the country. The company's products and solutions include an IoT platform, devices and several types of connectivity, all of which enable a broad range of applications. Vox (which is being transformed into Vivica) has had an existing relationship with Activate since 2018 when it selected the company’s IoT platform to power its own offering.
“We evaluated a lot of platforms and found Activate to be the ideal partner for us. There’s always a tendency to think or assume that SA is behind the times and international products are better, but we were thrilled to find a local company that is on par with the best international companies. What really excites us is that we have had a relationship for four years already and it was time to 'take it to the next level',” says Jacques du Toit, CEO, Vivica Group.
As part of the acquisition, Activate Group will fall under Guardian Eye, which offers cloud-based access control, visitor management, CCTV security, integrated IoT applications, real-time monitoring and analytics, and runs a remote operations centre that provides customers with 24/7/365 cost-effective monitoring and reduces the requirement for guards on site.
Activate founder, Rodney Taylor, says that bringing together Activate and Guardian Eye solutions offered synergies, as a growing number of IoT applications have to do with security, monitoring and tracking as well. He adds that Guardian Eye will remain the primary brand as it is more well known in the market, with Activate being the IoT product. Within Guardian Eye, Activate will focus on providing IoT solutions to the healthcare, retail and logistics sectors.
“I have built Activate Group by myself over the past few years, and this acquisition will take the company to the next level. Being part of Guardian Eye gives us access to the much larger user base that exists within the broader Vivica Group, as well as the capacity to deploy the huge volumes of sensors that are needed to meet the requirements of larger customers,” says Taylor.
The acquisition ties in neatly with Vivica Group's desire to bring together companies that challenge the conventional and enable problem-solving – whether it’s energy, security, connectivity or cloud computing – while also enabling an entrepreneurial, visionary spirit to grow and scale in a sustainable manner.
Taylor adds that as the enlarged Guardian Eye business harnesses the synergies resulting from the Activate Group acquisition, the focus will be on job creation through creating opportunities for growth, and training and mentoring employees in order to push them up the ladder.
“We were attracted to Activate Group’s entrepreneurial spirit and attitude, and Vivica Group can act as the ideal incubator that can guide this business through to maturity. Security is crucial in South Africa, and Guardian Eye will help create safer communities around South Africa through these innovative IoT products as well as the services provided by the remote operations centre,” says Du Toit.
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