UK security exports “on the increase” according to BSIA member companies

Members of the BSIA's Export Council report good levels of interest in UK security products expertise emanating from overseas territories

Members of the BSIA’s Export Council report good levels of interest in UK security products expertise emanating from overseas territories

Security exporters from the British Security Industry Association’s (BSIA) Export Council have reported a further increase in the demand for British security products and services from overseas buyers across 2015.

In an annual survey conducted by the BSIA, members of the Association’s Export Council – a dedicated forum for BSIA member companies focused on extending their business to overseas markets – report their experiences of exporting in the past 12 months and their expectations for the coming year.

In this year’s survey, which was launched during UKTI’s Export Week, respondents reveal that there continues to be a high demand for British security products and services, with 60% citing an increase in overseas business during 2015 and a further 30% stating that the level of business had remained the same.

Further increases in overseas trade are expected for 2016, with a clear focus on the Middle East as an important market for the UK’s security sector. Indeed, 40% of respondents identify the Middle East as the single most important target market while 80% are looking to increase their level of business in this region.

Over half of respondents attended Intersec Dubai in 2015, which reflects the clear importance that this region has for UK security exporters.

Accurate picture of emerging trends

“This annual survey has enabled us to build an accurate picture of those emerging trends experienced by UK security exporters operating on a global scale,” commented Daren Wood, membership and export services manager at the BSIA.

Wood continued: “The level of overseas business for our Export Council members continues to increase year-on-year and, in what is now an increasingly global marketplace, we expect more and more UK-based companies to turn towards overseas markets in the future.”

Interestingly, 2015’s survey shows that, for 40% of respondents, overseas distributors are the most important target vertical market. This compares to previous years where Critical National Infrastructure, the utilities and Government have ranked highly.

“The UK enjoys a positive international reputation when it comes to the provision of security products and services,” added Wood, “at least in part due to the innovation which has become synonymous with our security industry.” However, Wood suggested there are still several barriers faced by UK security exporters.

“For over half of the respondents, the most significant challenges relate to cost or price pressures and the continued burden of local certification costs. The existence of third party certification schemes in many European countries continues to be a significant barrier, and particularly so for members of our Security Equipment Manufacturers Section. There’s a requirement for products to be tested to different standards depending upon which country they are to be sold into, This can be both a time-consuming and expensive process.”

Positive outlook for 2016

The outlook for 2016 remains positive. 100% of respondents expect their company’s export business to increase over the coming 12 months.

Anecdotally, members of the BSIA’s Export Council cited that they expect the introduction of more IP-based schemes and a “healthy demand” for integration and home automation.

“BSIA members will continue to capitalise on the demand for British products by growing their presence at key international trade shows such as Intersec Dubai, Security Essen and IFSEC South East Asia,”concluded Wood.

“To support members in attending overseas trade shows, the BSIA organises UK Pavilions at several key trade events, thus forging productive trade links between UK security companies and overseas buyers from around the world.”

*For more information about becoming the BSIA’s Export Council visit:

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

Related Posts