The Big Interview: Eagle Eye Networks Vice President and Managing Director, EMEA, Rishi Lodhia

Eagle Eye Networks

Eagle Eye Networks is a global leader in cloud video surveillance, delivering cyber-secure, cloud-based video with artificial intelligence (AI) and analytics to make businesses more efficient and the world a safer place. It provides security and real-time business intelligence, helping organisations of all sizes and types optimise their operations. Here, we speak to Vice President and Managing Director, EMEA, Rishi Lodhia about what sets the company apart – including its strong focus on education and training. We also hear about the benefits of the ‘true cloud’, how the brand is supporting the Consultant and Specifier community and about Eagle Eye Networks latest product developments.

What impact are you having on the market, generally speaking? What can you offer that competitors cannot?

RL: “Eagle Eye Networks is the pioneer of cloud video surveillance, and we’re pleased to be working with a growing number of resellers in the UK. We focus not only solutions, but on education. There is a large installed base of security cameras in the UK, but these are predominantly legacy analogue systems. As businesses look to upgrade and modernise, they often have questions about how cloud systems work, how cloud video surveillance differs from traditional on-premises systems, and the specific benefits for business owners.

“At Eagle Eye, we like to take time to understand our customers’ unique challenges and requirements, and offer education and training so our customers can leverage Eagle Eye products to meet their specific needs.

“Two key differentiators for Eagle Eye Networks are “true cloud” video surveillance, and our commitment to an open platform.

“First, not all “cloud systems” meet the requirements of “true cloud”, which include on-demand self-service, broad network access, resource pooling, rapid elasticity or expansion, and measured service. A true cloud system is purpose-built for cloud computing, cybersecurity and video surveillance, providing capabilities that on-premise solutions cannot match.

“On-premise systems are constrained by cost limitations as well as the fixed computing and storage capacities of local servers. Some companies install traditional client-server software on a cloud-hosted server and label it a “cloud-based system”, implying that the software is designed to harness cloud computing advantages when, in reality, it operates under the same constraints as on-premise systems.

“Secondly, video is just one aspect of a comprehensive security solution. Our platform is genuinely open, which means users aren’t locked into a single technology. We support thousands of security camera makes and models, and our open API enables integrations with a wide range of third-party technologies such as access control, intercoms, analytics, sensors, and more. This flexibility empowers users to create a customised security solution that meets their specific needs.”

You refer to understanding customer challenges, what would you say are the biggest challenges that Eagle Eye Networks helps your customers to overcome?

RL: “All Eagle Eye Networks’ customers are unique, however there are five common issues that tend to resonate the majority of clients.

Managing Dispersed Sites: Many customers grapple with the complexity of overseeing multiple security cameras in multiple dispersed locations, especially when they all use different solutions.

Time-Consuming Manual Processes: The considerable time required to physically travel to a site, manually search and review hours of footage from various cameras, and then share this data with relevant authorities. This is a real problem for many organisations.

“Lack of Camera Status Awareness: Customers often discover camera malfunctions or downtime only after an incident has occurred, highlighting a critical need for better awareness of the recording status of each camera.

“Loss of NVR/DVR Equipment: Criminals have become more forensically aware and so the theft or destruction of Network Video Recorders (NVRs) or Digital Video Recorders (DVRs) during a crime is becoming more common.

Cybersecurity Concerns: Many clients express concerns about the cybersecurity of their existing video surveillance solutions, but simply do not have the budget for a drastic rip and replace approach.

“Understanding these challenges is the initial step, the next step is to assess how these obstacles affect our customers’ day-to-day operations. As an example, consider the urgency of a misplaced or lost purse at a housing association. Delays in searching through extensive footage from multiple cameras can impede investigations. If security personnel must be physically present to search through video at multiple sites, finding the exact video needed could take many days, or it may be an impossible task. Delays of this sort can lead to resident dissatisfaction and tarnish the housing association’s reputation in handling incidents effectively.

“Through careful attention to a customer’s specific challenges and a thorough understanding of the repercussions these challenges entail, Eagle Eye Networks can offer tailored solutions that resolve issues and mitigate the adverse effects on their overall operations.”

How are you supporting the Consultant & Specifier (A&E) Community?

RL: “Consultants and specifiers play a crucial role in the security industry, providing expertise in establishing and recommending effective security measures. To support their clients effectively, consultants are eager to stay informed about the latest technologies and the ever-evolving regulatory landscape. Eagle Eye Networks has an innovative A&E program, led by Richard Dover, which is designed to keep consultants updated on our latest technologies as well as offer a wealth of exclusive resources, world-class training, and unwavering technical and marketing support.

“By sharing our comprehensive knowledge of cloud video surveillance and the latest advancements in artificial intelligence with the consultant community, we empower them with even greater expertise. This expertise is essential in mitigating risks and safeguarding assets, whether it’s for individuals, businesses, government agencies, or any other organisation. It’s about providing clients with the best possible guidance and support in an ever-evolving security landscape.”

Can you take me through some of the highlights from 2023? (big launches/big developments etc?)   

RL: “Certainly, 2023 has been a significant year for our operations in the UK. We’ve expanded our sales and sales engineering teams, bringing on board individuals with extensive expertise in cloud technology and an understanding of the UK market. The goal is always to better support our partners as they navigate the transition to the cloud, opening up new opportunities for them to build their business and support their customers.

“On the product front, we’ve made noteworthy advancements and updates to our platform. Highlights include our Camera Direct Complete offering, a direct-to-cloud solution which requires very little upfront cost. It is ideal for customers requiring a limited number of cameras in one or more locations.

Version 3 of our open API platform, really stands out, significantly improving our capacity for seamless integration with third-party technologies, exemplified by our Immix integration launched in November. This integration harnesses the distinctive benefits of the cloud, merging them with monitoring or command centres to substantially reduce false positive alarms, greatly enhancing situational awareness, and response times for operators.

“Additionally, we introduced QL Stream, which enhances the ability of authorised personnel to securely view or playback local video without compromising on quality.

“Furthermore, our Smart Video Search solution continues to shine, recently adding another accolade to its collection, the “2023 Benchmark Analytics and Software Innovation Award”. We were also honoured to be a finalist in the Project of the Year category at the Security Fire and Excellence awards for our solution delivered to MSV Housing.”

What are you most proud of as a company?  

RL: “I am proud of our dedication to supporting our customers throughout their journey. We’ve developed exceptional teams across all areas of our business, and this commitment is deeply ingrained in our company culture, standing as a source of pride and distinction for us.

“Our sales team, for instance, is not only highly proficient in security solutions but, as I mentioned earlier, also driven by a belief in the power of cloud technology and a deep understanding of the UK market. Our marketing team works tirelessly to support our partners and their customers. The Eagle Eye customer and technical support teams, the backbone of our operation, are unwavering in their commitment to providing a seamless and positive experience for our customers.

“It’s not just about closing deals but about building strong relationships and partnerships. These relationships are nurtured by our dedicated customer success team, ensuring that our customers are heard, understood, and valued. If a customer requires assistance or faces challenges, our technical support team steps in with solutions, driven by an unwavering commitment to our customers’ success.

“For me, personally, over the past year, some of my proudest moments stem from the feedback we receive from our customers. They consistently emphasise that it’s our people who truly set us apart. They appreciate that we don’t simply sell a product or service; we provide our customers with a supportive and dedicated team that’s always there to assist, offer guidance, and ensure their success. This unwavering focus on our customers really fills us with exceptional pride as a company.”

What’s in store for 2024? Do you have any big developments upcoming?

RL: “I’d say 2024, focuses on two key areas: expanding our team and investing in technology to serve the businesses in the UK and around the world.

“Alongside this, we’re gearing up to introduce a wave of new products, features, and integrations to our platform. We want to deliver solutions that not only meet current requirements, but also anticipate future trends and demands in our industry–futureproof technology.  Our goal is to make our platform even more user-friendly, versatile, and valuable–to help businesses be more efficient and to make the world a safer place.”

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