Malou Mousten Dyhr Toft
Smart technology must be at the heart of British public transport systems to help regain public trust in its safety and security, suggests new research into public opinion of smart cities. Despite 85% of the UK’s rail network running, the research by Milestone Systems has revealed that almost four in 10 (39%) are now more reluctant to use public transport, and one in 10 (10%) would not use public transport at all due to worries about infection risk. Improved infrastructure to gain back the trust The mass return to train travel is an opportunity for a significant change to the network’s data infrastructure and an opportunity to rebuild trust in public transport and limit long-term avoidance following the pandemic. New Great British Railways umbrella promises improved infrastructure, better fares, and busier timetables The consumer research commissioned by the leading video management software provider found that only around two-fifths (39%) of people plan to use transport more or as frequently as they did before the pandemic, demonstrating a clear need for the government and public sector to attract users back to public transport. Steps are already being taken towards this, with the recently announced plan to bring the rail network under single national leadership. The new Great British Railways umbrella is promising improved infrastructure, better fares, and busier timetables to the public. Building a hygiene conscious society However, there must be a greater assurance of the safety of traveling on public transport to give a more hygiene-conscious society peace of mind while traveling. This can realistically be achieved through the use of smart video tech, which can identify potentially contagious passengers and optimize the flow of people through high footfall areas, for example. Malou Toft, VP EMEA at Milestone Systems said, “The public is more aware than ever of the risks of infection-spread whilst around large numbers of people, even for short periods of time, and this mentality will likely continue beyond the end of the pandemic. When you consider what public transport hubs looked like before the pandemic, it is obvious why so many people have reservations about using them again.” Deploying smart technology Skin temperature detection can indicate feverish passengers, mask detection, and crowd counting to avoid overcrowding " “Fortunately, there are several smart technology options which will not just rebuild public confidence, but also genuinely protect passengers from contracting COVID-19, and indeed other contagious illnesses, while traveling.” “Skin temperature detection can indicate feverish passengers, mask detection, and crowd counting to avoid overcrowding and to forecast carriage numbers. Digital signage allows for clear communication, heat mapping optimizes people flow and proximity identification enables social distancing. All of these technologies are readily available with the ability to anonymize data through metadata aggregation, privacy masking, data purging, and much more.” “Thereby, they would overcome many of the post-COVID-19 fears around public transport use, without compromising data privacy. Step one will be to implement them, and step two requires transport companies to communicate their benefits so that the public is aware of its usage and purpose.”
New research has found that more than half (55%) of the UK population don’t know what a smart city is, despite global spend reaching $124 billion in 2020 and at least 18 cities across the UK already having rolled outsmart technology. When asked if they understand what is meant by smart city, just 18% of people said that they are very familiar with the concept, while 28% said that they think they have a rough understanding. On the other hand, a fifth (20%) of people had never even heard the term before, a quarter (25%) said they weren’t sure, and 10% either found the concept of smart cities confusing or had heard the term but didn’t know what it meant. Increasing prevalence of smart cities While awareness is low, the research, published in a new report into public perception of smart cities by video management solution provider Milestone Systems, did also show that feelings towards the growing prevalence of smart city technology are largely positive. 24% of people said that they were very excited about future smart city developments Around a quarter (24%) of people said that they were very excited about future smart city developments, and a third (32%) said that they believe it’ll be a good thing. Only 13% of people were actively against further implementation of smart city technology, but a fifth (20%) said that they don’t know enough about the concept to know how they feel. Adopting smart technology Malou Toft, EMEA VP at Milestone Systems, commented, “The UK has been one of the earliest adopters of smart city technology and is recognized as a global pioneer, with London, Manchester, and Newcastle all ranked within the top 25 smart cities in the world in 2020. Yet the majority of the public is seemingly unaware of this progress.” “While this hasn’t caused any problems yet, we can see from the recent protests against the roll-out of low-traffic neighborhoods that buy-in from the general public is essential to the successful evolution of urban areas. Communicating the benefits of smart technology over the coming years will help to maintain the current positive feeling towards smarter cities, and ensure there is no backlash to further digital transformation.” Understanding the concept 21% of men said that they were very familiar with the smart cities concept, compared with 15% of women The youngest age groups were the most likely to say that they were very familiar with the term ‘smart city, with 27% of 18-34 years old giving this response. These numbers dramatically decreased with age, with only 6% of 55–64-year-olds and 2% of those 65+ confident that they understand what a smart city is. More unexpectedly, the data also shows a marked difference between men and women: 21% of men said that they were very familiar with the smart cities concept, compared with 15% of women, while 23% of women had never heard the term before, compared with 15% of men. The groups with the best understanding were most likely to be ‘very excited about the prospect of smarter cities, and also no more likely to be opposed to the idea than the average, suggesting that greater knowledge and understanding of smart city technology typically leads to more positive feeling rather than negative. Providing opportunity Malou continued, “While we might have expected the older generations to be less informed on the subject, it is startling to note the differences between the responses from men and women. While certain demographics may be less likely to naturally encounter information about smart city technology, they will be equally as affected by the tech as it becomes more widely implemented.” “It’s clear that more needs to be done to reach these groups and allow them to take an interest in the exciting ways in which their cities are evolving.”
Milestone Systems have hired Jos Beernink as new EMEA Director Channel Sales, reporting to Malou Toft, VP EMEA. Jos Beernink’s most recent position was as VP EMEA Sales at Genetec and with previous positions at Honeywell Security and Fire/ADI, Samsung Electronics and Tech Data. EMEA Channel Sales Head Jos Beernink will lead EMEA Channel Sales, which is comprised of four sales regions with regional sales managers as direct reports; North Europe, Middle Europe and South Europe as well as Middle East & Africa. “I am thrilled to be able to attract a true industry heavyweight as Jos Beernink”, says Malou Toft, VP EMEA for Milestone Systems. “Jos brings a wealth of channel and industry experience to his new team and to Milestone Systems.” Expanding Beyond Security The appointment of Jos Beernink is part of the new EMEA organization announced in January, aimed at helping Milestone Systems’ community grow, in and beyond security in verticals like retail, transportation and safe cities. The new EMEA organization has three specialized sales areas and a strong consolidated sales & tech operation.
MIPS (Milestone Integration Platform Symposium) Copenhagen 2019 saw Milestone Systems double down on the ‘creating an intelligent world’ theme from 2018 and expand it to ‘exploring an intelligent world.’ “The intelligent world theme was bigger than we could cover in one year!” said Malou Toft, VP of EMEA at Milestone Systems. Isolate Important Events With 865+ registered attendees and more than 47 exhibiting partners in Denmark, this is the largest Community Days event Milestone have hosted, even larger than the very well-attended Nashville event in February. The company took the opportunity to present Marketplace, their new Amazon-style online company directory, where end-users can identify Milestone Verified and Certified companies to supply a security solution. There was also a demo of Milestone’s XProtect software updates, able to adjust a video feed in real time to show number plates, to de-blur video and to filter out irrelevant clips to isolate important events, identified by artificial intelligence (AI). Self-Learning Mechanism We’re seeing advances on a small scale and are now going to see it becoming an inherent part of XProtect moving forward"“We’re seeing advances on a small scale and are now going to see it becoming an inherent part of XProtect moving forward,” said Malou Toft. “[One example is] the way we can ask a camera with the right type of integration to dynamically adjust to the environment.” And Malou says the best is yet to come. Of today’s technology on show at MIPS, and indeed at 2019’s trade shows, she said: “Is it super intelligent? No, not now. But it’s mostly solving the simple tasks now, that are replicable. But it is optimising the process, and to become a self-learning mechanism, we are going to see much more of that moving forward.” Exploring The Intelligent World The talks of the symposium reflected these thoughts as well. Altimeter’s Brian Solis commented about AI: “We can automate the daily things we do today, or we could use the technology to automate our innovations.” This is clear in Milestone’s theme of ‘exploring the intelligent world’ – the industry has created the foundations of the intelligent, and now companies such as Milestone and their 110 (and growing) new Marketplace partners are exploring them. MIPS EMEA 2020’s location is yet to be determined, but MIPS Bali 2019 will be Tuesday April 2 – Thursday April 4. Milestone will be back in Copenhagen for their Developer Conference October 1 and October 2.
“If you want to be a winner, you need to stay sharp”, says EMEA Vice President, Malou Toft, as she announces a completely new organization in EMEA, and continues: “Milestone Systems has high growth ambitions for 2019, so we are proud to announce a completely new organization in EMEA. To stay on top, we need increased geo-focus in the region, even more community effort and stronger sales excellence to remain a winning team with exciting career paths for our talented employees and leaders”. Specialized And Strategic Sales The new organization will help Milestone Systems’ community grow, also beyond security in verticals like retail, transportation and safe cities. The new EMEA organization has three specialized sales areas and a strong consolidated sales & tech operation. Community Sales & Business Development is a new EMEA department with specific focus on specialised and strategic sales EMEA Channel Sales will be split in four new sales regions; North, Middle and South Europe as well as Middle East & Africa. EMEA Distribution & Emerging Markets will cover Milestone Systems’ emerging territories as well as select pan-EMEA distributors in order to strengthen the relationships and create more value. Local distributors will continue to be managed in the local countries. Community Sales & Business Development is a new EMEA department with specific focus on specialized and strategic sales where end user specialists, customized development, technology partnerships and key accounts will reside. Also new is EMEA Sales & Tech Operations, which will be the center of excellence for Milestone Systems’ operations and supporting activities around customers and partners. EMEA Sales & Tech Experts “To secure a strong local presence, I have full trust in our four new regional sales managers: Neil Killick will head up North Europe (UK, Ireland & Nordics). Michael Fontaine will head up Middle Europe (DACH & Benelux). Alberto Bruschi will head up South Europe (France, Italy & Iberia). Amine Sadi will head up Middle East & Africa. I am thrilled to have Christian Ringler as director for our new EMEA Community Sales & Business Development, Anders Johansson as director for EMEA Distribution & Emerging Markets, and Line Hjardemaal as director for EMEA Sales & Tech Operations,” says Malou Toft, and concludes: “This change is happening to bring us closer to our customers and partners by ramping up our community efforts. And we need deeper specialization to continue to foster growth. I believe that everyone in the Milestone Systems community will experience positive effects from these changes”.
IFSEC International 2018 kicked off last week at London’s ExCel Centre. Visitors were lucky enough to experience a rare three days of British sunshine as they came together to discuss the latest trends and technologies in the physical security industry. Many exhibitors commented on how the show seemed smaller than previous years, with stands more spread out, and fewer ‘double-decker’ offerings than earlier shows. Although exhibitors represented all aspects of physical security, including access control and intrusion detection, the show was largely dominated by video surveillance. Video manufacturers Avigilon and Dahua were key sponsors, while the largest stand by far was occupied by Hikvision. Rather than hosting large product portfolios, exhibitors chose to demonstrate how integrated solutions could provide a more holistic solution If stands seemed more modest than in previous years, this may be a reflection of the industry shifting away from its long-standing product focus. Displaying large product portfolios takes more exhibit space. In an increasingly commoditized market, security integrators are combatting price erosion by emphasizing holistic solutions rather than products and features. While some manufacturers have responded by collaborating with partners to offer a broader portfolio of solutions, others have invested in building end-to-end systems. Both these trends were reflected at the show; rather than hosting large product portfolios with a wide range of features, exhibitors chose to demonstrate how integrated solutions could provide a more holistic solution to end users’ challenges. Integrated Systems Approach One manufacturer opting for a solutions focus was security, access control and door entry systems provider STANLEY Product and Technology. The stand was represented by a range of STANLEY brands including PACOM and PAC GDX, as well as technology from recent acquisition 3xLOGIC. The PACOM team was on hand to demonstrate integrations of PACOM’s Graphical Management System (GMS) with workflow management software from RightCrowd, and biometric authentication products from EyeLock. PACOM Systems’ Commercial Director Gary Rowden explained that the stand was designed specifically to showcase all of STANLEY’s brands and partners in one place, encouraging customers to buy into the STANLEY solutions approach, rather than focusing on specific products. The show was largely dominated by video surveillance, with video manufacturer Avigilon a key sponsor Connecting With Partners Another company emphasizing partner solutions was Milestone Systems. Milestone’s Vice President for EMEA, Malou Mousten Dyhr Toft, who joined the company in March, explained how IFSEC International continues to be a key show. It was an opportunity to meet with Milestone’s expansive community of existing partners, as well as connecting with new partners and end users. Milestone hopes to enable community customers to process more video data with fewer servers, increasing scalabilityIn February this year, the company launched the Milestone System Builder initiative, allowing partners to optimize their hardware to pre-load Milestone’s XProtect VMS software. Several system builder partners were present at the Milestone stand. By collaborating with NVIDIA, Milestone hopes to enable community customers to process more video data with fewer servers, increasing scalability and reducing the total cost of ownership of its partner solutions. The stand showcased Milestone’s latest XProtect 2018 R2 VMS that leverages NVIDIA’s high-powered graphics processing units (GPUs), which can handle up to 2,000 video streams on one single server. Commitment To Open Systems MOBOTIX took this year’s IFSEC International as an opportunity to spread the word about its increased commitment to open systems. Since the company’s majority acquisition by Konica Minolta in 2016, and the subsequent addition of CEO Thomas Lausten last year, the company has undergone a significant change in approach, all-the-while guarding its core decentralized IP video product offering and made-in-Germany DNA. Lausten was previously a key figure at Milestone Systems and has brought to MOBOTIX a new approach focused on collaboration. Partners present at the MOBOTIX stand included Milestone, Kentix and Wavestore. The company also demonstrated its commitment to open systems by unveiling MOBOTIX MOVE, the manufacturer’s first line of ONVIF G compliant cameras. Visitors were lucky enough to experience a rare three days of British sunshine at IFSEC International this year Security system provider Vanderbilt had many new developments on show, including integrations both within Vanderbilt systems and with partner systems. The company’s SPC intrusion detection system now integrates with Milestone software, allowing SPC users to trigger events and control alarm systems from within the Milestone platform. A further highlight was Vanderbilt’s ACTEnterprise access control system, which now integrates with ASSA ABLOY’s Aperio wireless locking solution. Vanderbilt hopes that the integration will provide customers with faster, more cost-effective access control installations.Vanderbilt hopes that the integration will provide customers with faster, more cost-effective access control installations Reducing Costs, Increasing Ease-Of-Use Many exhibitors were keen to demonstrate how integrated solutions could reduce costs for integrators by unifying systems on one easy-to-use platform. Arecont Vision unveiled its new Contera cloud-based video management solution at ISC West in April, making IFSEC the technology’s first outing in the European market. Contera is Arecont’s first video management offering and will allow customers to benefit from end-to-end solutions from the US-based company. Since the Contera system is designed to be web-based from the start, integrators will not be faced with the additional cost of adapting a legacy VMS system to the cloud. IDIS was another manufacturer highlighting their enhanced user experience and reduced cost offered by end-to-end systems. Visitors experienced demonstrations of the IDIS Center video management software, which is designed to offer smart user experience controls, and a user-friendly interface. Also on display were the company’s latest ranges of analog and IP cameras. The IDIS system allows users to ‘mix-and-match’ HD analog and IP video depending on the requirements of the project, with all surveillance operated from the same IDIS software interface. The mix-and-match approach avoids the additional cost of unnecessarily ripping and replacing legacy analog systems. IFSEC 2018 presented a snapshot of how manufacturers from across video, access control and intrusion detection are continuing to innovate and collaborate to stay competitive in an increasingly challenging market, without losing sight of the most pressing needs of end users and integrators.
Milestone Systems, an open platform company in IP video management software (VMS), announces its new Vice President for EMEA, Malou Mousten Dyhr Toft, who also becomes member of Milestone Systems’ Extended Leadership Team. She will be responsible for the whole EMEA region, including Sales Operation, Custom Development and Support and will focus on further strengthening the EMEA partner community of distributors, installers, solutions partners and camera manufacturers. “I’m very excited to join Milestone Systems and I look forward to being part of this forward-looking and innovative company. The concept of openness and community is a profound part of Milestone Systems’ dna and is undoubtedly one of the reasons why we will lead the disruption changing the security industry in the years to come,” Malou Mousten Dyhr Toft says. I’m very excited to join Milestone Systems and I look forward to being part of this forward-looking and innovative company" Innovation And Business Developments Innovation and business development have played a significant role in Malou Mousten Dyhr Toft career in the telecom industry – an industry that was truly disrupted with the rise of mobile telecommunications and later the introduction of smart phones. Disruption emerges when customers require change, so it is essential to understand who the customers are as well as their requirements for design of services and products, according to Malou Mousten Dyhr Toft “Milestone Systems is an industry leader, and our ambition is to maintain this position. My goal is to further grow the EMEA region and support our sales organization and community of partners in rethinking how we do business and especially how we can grow business together as a community,” Malou Mousten Dyhr Toft says. Changes In Security Industry “We were looking for someone with proven leadership skills and the ability to dare think differently. We believe that the security industry is facing significant changes and Malou Mousten Dyhr Toft is the right person to lead this change in the EMEA region and to support our ambition to increase growth in the years to come,” Chief Sales & Marketing Officer Kenneth Hune Petersen, Milestone Systems, says. Malou Mousten Dyhr Toft joins Milestone Systems after a long and remarkable career at Telenor, most recently as Head of B2B. In 2016, Malou was elected a Top 100 Business Talent by Danish national business magazine Berlingske Tidende. Malou Mousten Dyhr Toft will be based in Milestone Systems’ headquarters in Copenhagen and report directly to Kenneth Hune Petersen, Chief Sales & Marketing Officer.