Why Elvey?

November 2012 News

Roger Federer is to men’s world tennis, what Elvey Security Technologies is to the South African security sector: a champion with a long pedigree of achievement.

That is the assertion of Elvey CEO Jack Edery, who has headed up the dynamic company since 2003, carrying on the tradition of service excellence adopted by founder Charles Elvey.

Despite the country’s challenges of the last 66 years, not least of all the creation and dissolution of apartheid, international sanctions, the imprisonment and release of Nelson Mandela, the hosting of Rugby World Cup in 1995, the restoration of its Commonwealth and UN General Assembly membership, the adoption of a new constitution, strikes and presidential elections, the hosting of the 2010 FIFA World Cup and, an economic recession, Elvey has gone from strength to strength: from a small electronic and electric component distributor, it is today one of Africa’s leading security system distributors.


Registered as Charles Elvey Agencies (Pty) Ltd, Elvey opened its doors for the first time in 1946, the same year that the first photographs of Earth were taken from space. By 1976, the year the Apple 1 appeared, Elvey had become such a force in the electrical and electronic components industry that Charles Elvey took on a partner: Elliot Wainstein.

During 1981, which saw the Space Shuttle enjoy its first-ever orbital flight, Elvey went about acquiring business interests abroad. It also changed its name to Elvey International (Pty) Ltd, to reflect this.

When the first Chechen and Liberian Wars ended in 1996, the year in which Taiwan’s dictatorship also came to an end and Dolly the Sheep made world headlines as the first successfully cloned mamma, Elvey decided to focus primarily on security. The decision to import and stock the world’s top security products entrenched Elvey’s position as a market leader in the African security industry.

In 1999, when the Euro was introduced and the world’s population hit 6 billion, Elvey listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE). Two years later, in 2001, when Wikipedia was founded and the War on Terror declared, JSE-listed company Hudaco Industries (Pty) Ltd acquired Elvey Security Technologies, which now forms an integral part of the Hudaco Group.


“Since our inception,” says Edery, “Elvey has set the benchmark for service excellence in the security industry. We have achieved this by developing close working relationships with our clients so that we can understand their businesses and the effect of the external environment on them. We are continually evolving to cater for their unique requirements by adopting a flexible approach to their security requirements which is both profitable and enduring for all parties.”

Elvey is driven by a sound business vision, which focuses on the protection of people and property by providing quality innovative products and solutions to the electronic security industry, he continues. “It is a given at Elvey that a fundamental element of selling any product is to provide exceptional service from consultation right through to on-site assistance. Going beyond the call of duty and exceeding expectations are principles understood and embraced by all Elvey staff members. Our sales staff are well qualified professionals who have been trained to provide the best security solution with the best training and support back-up.”


Elvey supplies high-end security systems and equipment to a range of clients within the security industry, including installers and corporate and security personnel from banks, mines, government and private business.

Says Elvey’s technical director, Zane Greeff: “Our customers are at the forefront of our organisation; they have moulded us into the success story that Elvey is today. Over the years, they have asked for input from us with regard to streamlining their businesses. We have incorporated these solutions, many of which have become our core competencies, into our business model, which has been implemented across our branches.”


Elvey Security Technologies core competencies as a value added distributor are achieved through seven key disciplines that benefit our customers:

1. Technology and innovation

Elvey stocks the world’s leading security brands, which has earned it a formidable reputation as one of Africa’s most trusted suppliers. DSC, NetworX, Optex, Visonic, GSC, Impro, Bosch, Shany and Dahua are the leading brands in its impressive stable of blue chip and award-winning products.

“We provide a unique blend of domain expertise and exceptional service on the back of state-of-the-art technology,” says Elvey’s national sales manager Ingo Mutinelli. “This enables us to constantly accelerate and facilitate the journeys of all our customers towards improved security systems.”

He adds: “Security technology has evolved to the point that people can have immediate and visual access to their homes or businesses. We are proud stockists of products such as SureConnect, which allows anyone with a cellphone or computer linked to a SIM card or networked security system to manage security systems, effortlessly and at any time of the day or night.”

SureConnect, a signal-clearing house for the South African electronic security industry, utilises cellular networks and internet connections to provide a routing service for electronic security signals to various destinations. Through the use of TCP/IP or SIM card and GSM/GPRS, cell phones or computers are connected to the SureConnect clearing house, which, on receipt of an event-triggered signal, will relay the signal to the dealer’s monitoring station, the security service provider and all end-users.

2. Convenience

Elvey offers its clients the convenience of online shopping, which, says national sales manager Ingo Mutinelli is “the intelligent way to order what you need when you need it, without having to stand at a counter or wait for stock to be picked and packed. Accordingly, our Elvey e-Trade system has been designed around usability, convenience and time-saving for our customers, who are extremely important to us.”

Brimful of features, Elvey e-Trade offers ‘live’ pricing, which not only ensures that quotations and orders are in sync with the prices reflected on the company’s system but also that they are processed without delay.

Using e-Trade our customers are able to compile quotations to their customers and attached pictures of the product being used. Customers can also browse e-Trade for new product releases in every conceivable category, search for specific items, load articles into a shopping cart and submit online orders. Installers can use it for up-to-date information on product promotions, place orders directly from Elvey and have the stock delivered to their closest branch, their own premises or even their installation sites.

3. Accessibility

Elvey Security Technologies is never out of reach of its customers, says Greeff. “With an extensive branch network of 18 outlets located in all major city centres in South Africa, our business partners can rest assured that they are in the best hands. Each branch has extensive stock holding to ensure that customers don’t experience any delays in securing their clients’ premises.”

Further to this, Elvey has a dedicated sales team that handles product exports into Africa. The company currently exports to all major African and two South American countries and it has sub-distributors in Uganda, Angola, Zimbabwe and Kenya.

4. Support

Elvey prides itself on achieving the highest possible industry support standards. “Support is a fundamental element of our industry, which sells products of a highly technical nature,” says Mutinelli. “Even the professionals need support from time to time. No matter what kind of support they require, Elvey has professional, friendly, courteous and knowledgeable technical staff who are available to help.”

Elvey has in operation a national helpline (08611 Elvey or 08611 35839), with onsite support at all branches. For the most challenging sites, the company’s technical specialists at head office are available to re-create situations and do in-house testing.

5. Training

Aware of the importance of being able to provide internationally-benchmarked training to its own staff and the industry as a whole, Elvey joined forces with the acclaimed UK-based Tavcom Training Institute in 2005. Today, Elvey offers more than 20 different national certificated courses in the fields of closed circuit television (CCTV), Network IP, intruder alarm and other electronic security systems and on a range of products including DSC, Visonic, Networx, GSC and Impro.

There are also foundation courses for newcomers to the security industry, designed to introduce them to their areas of operation, whether CCTV, alarms or access control or just plain selling techniques. These courses make it a lot easier for newly qualified technicians, technical support staff, after-sales support personnel and sales people to acclimatise to South Africa’s security industry, says Dave Waywell, Elvey’s key accounts director.

Even the most competent and technical people still need product training from time-to-time in order to keep them abreast of new developments and give them a truly competitive advantage in the market place, he maintains.

He adds: “In these times of economic hardship, we must never lose sight of the fact that we have a perfect opportunity to empower ourselves. Good training will enable us to ride out this tough period on a wide surfboard of knowledge, so that when the seas calm down and the world’s economies stabilise, we will have used the worst of times to pave the way to a better future.”

6. Projects

Constant evolution and a passion for innovation, combined with years of experience and expertise, has led to Elvey being able to tackle the biggest and most challenging of projects with success, says Greeff. “We have built up a reputation in the security industry as a premium supplier of powerful integration platforms that seamlessly combine surveillance with access control, fire and intruder detection systems.”

Elvey’s projects team make every effort to understand its customers’ needs as well as their constantly evolving business environments, he continues. “Our goal is to deliver tailor-made, integrated security solutions that meet the specific needs of the end user, no matter how stringent their requirements,” he says. “We create systems that can be expanded as our clients’ businesses grow as well as those that span multiple buildings and sites. We never lose sight of the importance of utilising our clients’ security manpower optimally, sticking to agreed budgets and saving them money on training, maintenance, upgrades and security administration.”

7. Advice

Elvey’s sales staff undergo regular product training to ensure that they’re able to offer best advice on projects of all sizes and levels of difficulty, says Dave Waywell, Elvey’s key accounts director. This expertise is available to customers through the company’s branches and sales representatives who are competent in problem solving, system planning, product advice and after-sales support.

Concludes Jack Edery: “I have no doubt that South Africa’s future timeline will be as full of change and energy as its past. I also have no doubt that Elvey will continue to partner its customers through the changes as it has successfully done since 1946.”

For more information contact Elvey Security Technologies, +27 (0) 11 401 6700,  tasha.smith@elvey.co.za www.elvey.co.za


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