GVI Security Ceases Operations

An industry source confirmed to Security Products on Wednesday that GVI Security has ceased operations, effective Aug. 26, just five months after touting a new master distributor relationship with LG Security.

The source, an industry expert and former GVI insider, said the bank carrying the note on GVI Security took over Aug. 26. Only a skeleton crew remains at the company’s Carrollton, Texas, offices to sell off remaining inventory.

A conversation Tuesday with GVI Security President and CEO Steve Walin took on a-wait-and-see theme as Walin said he was talking to the company’s private equity firm, GenNx360  Capital Partners, which is based in New York.

"I don't have the authority to comment on anything at this time," Walin said when reached Wednesday. Walin noted he is still the CEO of GVI Security.

GVI Security offered a full line of IP-enabled and analog surveillance equipment under both the LG and GVI brands.

At ISC West in April, GVI officials were optimistic about the company’s future after announcing the master distributor partnership that allowed the company to market and package LG’s products as GVI’s own proprietary line. LG was already entrenched in the Asian, European and Latin American security markets.

GVI Security had a similar master agreement with Samsung that ended Jan. 1 of this year. GVI’s relationship with Samsung started to fray after Samsung Electronics sold its CCTV business to Samsung Techwin (STA), a sister subsidiary in the Samsung group of companies in October 2009.

Industry sources said that when the Samsung agreement ended, finances tumbled by the millions of dollars. GVI Security went private in December 2009 when GenNx360 took control. But when the bank called the note on GVI, GenNx360 also pulled its financial holdings out.

GVI Security had banked much of its future on the LG relationship. But, the insider said, revenues dropped from approximately $50 million per year with Samsung to only what was projected to be $10 million this year.

“This is a $50 billion company based in Seoul, Korea, that is excited to be part of this market,” Walin said during ISC West. “Our strategy is to do for LG what we previously had done for Samsung. Our plans are to work closely with LG to develop a product roadmap for North America. We expect to fine-tune the roadmap and bring LG full-force into the security industry.”

The company’s exact sales figures are unavailable because it was privately held. But in late 2010, after GVI announced the end of the Samsung partnership, Walin said he was optimistic about 2011.

“We’re very bullish about business in 2011,” Walin said at ISC West. “We expect great things to come. November (2010) was an excellent month and so far, December is better than expected, without much of a seasonal impact.”

GVI operated throughout the Americas and had offices in the United States, Canada Mexico, Brazil, Chile and Colombia.

About the Authors

Brent Dirks is senior e-news/Web editor for Security Products and Network-Centric Security magazines.

Ralph C. Jensen is editor-in-chief of Security Today magazine.

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