Arcules Journey to GA: Where we are now and a look into 2019
by Andreas Pettersson, CEO of Arcules | Let's Connect
It wasn’t more than sixteen months ago that the leading provider of VMS in physical security successfully demonstrated a business case for integrated video cloud surveillance to the Canon Board of Directors.
Since then, Arcules has spun off from Milestone Systems and launched the disruptive Arcules solution, challenging businesses to re-evaluate on-premise solutions and migrate to cloud-based surveillance. Having had strong market reception of the product with many trial customers on our generally available platform, we have, and continue to make the case for video and IoT sensor data in the cloud.
It is our mission to be the global leader in video cloud IoT. The physical security industry wants (and needs) to move beyond traditional video surveillance. Connecting video data with IoT sensor data such as building management and access control makes integrating and connecting data for actionable intelligence a reality. Arcules is proof of that reality.
In reflecting about where we were, where we are now, and where we are headed, I have no doubt that cloud adoption is critical for business success. We are a cloud-first organization and I urge others to embrace cloud, if they have not already done so. Especially to those in physical security, I challenge all to view the cloud as more than “another way” to store data.
Consider the following:
- How might you improve safety or operations if you were able to view all your cameras in one view (across multiple locations in various geographies)?
- How much money could you be saving (or making) if you were able to use video data as a source of business intelligence?
- What would it mean for your business if video data worked for you--help you become proactive--instead of serving as forensic evidence?
There can’t be revolution without evolution
When Milestone built the incubation and ventures division, our team was tasked with investigating new avenues to expand Milestone’s product offerings. We saw that as internet speeds became increasingly better, video data speeds became better. Businesses were quickly adopting cloud for CRM, ERP, and multimedia conferencing needs. Milestone’s leadership recognized that intelligent, cloud-based video data made sense for a lot of businesses, especially those that wanted to move away from the capital expenditures (CAPEX) model.
At the same time, Canon acquired Milestone as part of a broader push to expand its video surveillance market presence. Rather than absorb acquisitions completely under the Canon umbrella, Canon kept Milestone autonomous with a long-term strategy of commanding a larger market share of products that integrate IoT technology.
The business case for spinning off Arcules became clear after recognizing the disruption a cloud-based technology would cause in an industry traditionally reliant on on-premise security solutions. The physical security industry is well-versed in hardware and having vast server rooms on-site. Moving the industry towards cloud-based video surveillance would require market awareness and education. It would require an evolution in understanding and acceptance of the Cloud.
What our team initially envisioned was a unified, cloud-based platform that would enable businesses to maximize the full potential of the Cloud. We saw an opportunity to take this broader vision and specifically apply it to video surveillance. Canon and Milestone both realized that Arcules would require an extraordinary amount of dedication and focus to successfully launch, disrupt, and evolve the industry. In order to maximize that opportunity, we had to launch our own company, and build a dedicated platform from the ground up.
A fail fast, adaptive, and truly agile company culture for the long-term
As a spin off company from Milestone, Arcules had the challenge of building a new product that will continuously meet the needs of a rapidly evolving market and building a company that scaled alongside demands.
Early on, we had a vision about the culture we wanted to build. As a big believer that your company’s culture should mirror your product, and vice versa, our founding team embraced a “fail fast,” adaptive, and truly agile, company culture. In practice, this means that although we hired people with defined titles, we were careful to avoid boxing them into prescribed roles. Instead, our culture is fueled by autonomy and a “run with it” spirit. As we continue to grow and address more market needs, we’ll need to staff accordingly. To do that, we’ll follow the same hiring practices that got us here, identifying people who will contribute value and bring a collaborative spirit long-term.
Our team was deliberate in hiring holistically rather than functionally. While we absolutely had a need to hire based on certain skills, hard skills alone could not be the deciding factor. Instead, we needed skilled people who could scale with us — we sought out adaptive, open-minded collaborators. This need meant conducting many interviews for each role to find individuals who were both a functional and cultural fit. The extra time spent hiring has paid dividends, with every employee embracing our culture. I know our identity will remain intact no matter how much we scale and evolve — and that’s a testament to the people we brought on board.
Where we are today
Since our launch in July, we’ve continued to improve the Arcules solution. Our partners and customers are more receptive to an integrated video cloud service, having seen Arcules’ features and functionality. Many people who projected the Cloud would take over physical security in 15 years, are now saying it’ll be more like in five years.
The Arcules solution offers a single unified platform from which companies can monitor their entire network of devices and cameras, across multiple locations in various geographies. We built the platform with simplicity, reliability, and IT security in mind, which is reflected in the straightforward on premise-to-cloud migration and site-to-cloud data encryption. Our framework is easily scalable across dispersed geographic areas and reduces the need for large servers or manual maintenance. Integrated video cloud surveillance is a valuable resource for companies looking to scale while minimizing operating expenses.
We operate on Google Cloud Platform, which enables us to deliver the scalability and elasticity our customers require without compromising IT security. At the same time, our autonomous development squads’ expertise has allowed us to integrate predictive analytics, machine learning and AI to truly drive video data to the next level.
But our biggest differentiator is our analytics and integrations. By integrating an artificial intelligence and machine learning engine, we’ve created a platform that moves an industry from reactive vulnerability monitoring to proactive business intelligence. We’re currently working to expand our intelligent capabilities by developing specific features like crowd density monitoring and suspicious behavior identification. These tools allow security personnel to observe in real time what they could once only see in retrospect. It has also helped that the Arcules cloud solution has almost no latency enabling a very comparable experience to on-premise solutions.
Where we’re headed in 2019
In terms of product development, we’ll continue to add key features and functionality to bring the value of video analytics to entire organizations, especially for IT and business optimization. We plan to have building access control available in the Arcules solution in early 2019. We know that access control is a must if we are to be the best unified security system on the market.
Critical for any AI/ML engine is the use of data in order to produce better analytics. As we onboard more customers onto the Arcules solution, we expect our AI/ML engine to refine models and produce even better analytics for end users.
Since our inception, our vision and mission have remained the same: to be the global leader in video cloud IoT. As we head into 2019, we look forward to welcoming partners who embrace our vision and want help the physical security industry evolve beyond reactive vulnerability monitoring. We are always actively looking for more system integrators, consultants and service providers to partner with.