Food Plus Supermarkets operate 18 locations in and around Nairobi, Kenya, as well as offer a state-of-the-art online shopping and delivery service, extending their service range even further. In early 2018, this first-rate supermarket business needed to add new surveillance equipment at a number of stores, as well as upgrade some existing systems. They called in system integrators AUA Industria for this crucial project, and Hikvision’s cameras, NVRs and VMS were chosen for the job.
As with all large retail markets in densely populated areas around the world, loss prevention and the protection of human life are critical. To protect their goods, services, personnel, and – most importantly – their valued customers, the management at Food Plus contacted fellow Nairobi business AUA Industria. AUA boasts a broad repertoire of successful high-tech solutions and integrated systems – not just in Kenya but in a long list of neighboring African countries as well. The request: establish a cutting-edge surveillance system across all retail locations and create a single command center for centralized monitoring.
And that’s just what AUA did.
Nairobi is a dense, faced-paced, international and cosmopolitan city, bustling with commerce, tourism, family life, and much more. One of the most important regions on the continent, this lovely “green city in the sun” of 6.5 million people added several massive critical infrastructure projects just in the last few decades. With constant activity day and night, business owners must remain vigilant at all times to protect their assets and investments. And with advanced surveillance equipment becoming more and more affordable all the time, it’s becoming easier to do that.
Food Plus stores feature entrances and exits that are welcoming to the public. To shoppers, the entryways make stores look inviting and appealing. To the security staff, however, this makes them vulnerable to clandestine opportunists. The staff must be aware of anything from petty theft to fraudulent activity. While expansion of the business has been exciting for the owners of the supermarket chain, shoplifting and other security breaches have challenged security. And monitoring 18 locations with all their critical points and nodes is a big job. A new and more potent approach was needed.
AUA system integrators considered the big picture of the supermarket chain along with any necessary details for a particular store’s unique needs. To tie everything together, Food Plus needed a centralized communications and monitoring setup at its main office in the Kilimani neighborhood of the city. AUA chose Hikvision cameras for their superior capabilities and image clarity.
A total of 450 compact Outdoor Dome Cameras (model # DS-2CD2122FWD-I) with 4 mm lens were ordered and installed. These small and powerful cameras really pack great features and high performance into relatively discreet housings. Features like 1/2.8” progressive scan CMOS sensors, infrared lighting up to 30 meters, wide dynamic range for make them the best choice for what this supermarket chain needed most – namely, sharp 24-hour imaging and alarm linkage.
Food Plus uses motion detection from the available VCAs to provide a critical alert system, while E-Mail linkage triggers automatic notifications in the event a video feed is lost. These little giants include IP67 and IK10 ratings, which are critical for the grocery stores’ outdoor installation areas. Add to that the ability to render color imaging under extremely low lighting conditions – and of course black and white imaging in complete darkness with IR lighting – and these cameras are well-equipped for the job.
Hikvision’s NVRs provide the flexible and intelligent back-end support needed for this multi-site operation. The 64-channel Pro Series NVRs boast up to 4K resolutions. The Food Plus staff appreciate these NVRs for their ease of use and generous amounts of data storage, along with Hikvision’s tech support, which is always there to resolve any speedbumps along with way.
HikCentral Makes Centralized Management Effective
The Kilimani control office utilizes Hikvision’s home-grown HikCentral Cloud Platform. Hikvision’s newly released HikCentral V1.2 integrates more advanced products and technologies to make centralized management more effective, bringing together a convenient, efficient, and unified security system. It centralized and expanded Food Plus's extensive system, and enhanced control to achieve maximum security. The management reports a noticeably higher streaming speed from the store sub-streams to the central monitoring station, enabling much more effective security.
Based on a client-server model, HikCentral provides a video management system for Food Plus to manage and run daily security tasks. Surveillance-related functions are simple to operate, such as live viewing, recording, and playback on the platform, along with other integrated functions, such as access control, alarm management, and more. And with the ability to manage up to 100,000 cameras, there’s plenty of room to grow.
By March of 2018, the installation across all Food Plus stores was complete, much to the approval and appreciation of the chain’s executive management. Mr. Mark Kavita is the systems administrator for Chandarana Supermarkets, Ltd. He reported to us that, since installation, Food Plus has been able to reduce and control pilferage (shoplifting) and that the system is easy to use, provides a good alert system, and reaches higher streaming speeds from the stores to central location than their previous equipment. Additionally, Hikvision was found to be the most cost effective solution available with the best on-going support after completing the installation.
With all hardware running over IP and the new HikCentral platform bringing everything together, this powerful system has been up and running for months and is protecting customers, personnel, and goods day and night. Grocery shopping at Food Plus is the safest it has ever been. Hikvision is proud to be the choice for AUA integrators and hopes to provide more in the days to come. And if you visit a Food Plus store, don’t forget to check out the sushi bar!