Finnish locking solutions provider, Abloy, has opened several competence centres worldwide to support the Digital Transformation in professional access management and locking. The focus is to bring operational excellence to the rapidly evolving and critical rail industry.
The company is expanding its international business operations. The main focus in 2019 will be in the global railway industry which is undergoing a rapid Digital Transformation. To facilitate growth and support its professional customers worldwide, Abloy will open new competence centres in North America, Southern Europe and in the Asia-Pacific region this year.
Abloy aims to be active in major railway infrastructure and rolling stock projects worldwide and has, for years, provided access management solutions to critical infrastructure customers in other vertical markets, for example to South African telecommunications network provider, MTN.
The new competence centres will focus on Abloy’s PROTEC2 CLIQ access control technology. Opening of the latest CLIQ competence centre was announced in the United Kingdom earlier this year. In 2018, Abloy opened its first centres in Poland, South Africa, Singapore, Colombia and France.
The company is already known for securing high-profile properties such as the Panama Canal, Louvre in France, State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg, British Museum and Queen Elizabeth Hospital in the United Kingdom.
In the last few years, Abloy has invested in developing its PROTEC2 CLIQ technology to deliver the best range of solutions combining digital communication and precision mechanical products. At the core of this strategy has been the founding of a number of competence centres around the world to provide customers with technical expertise, professional service and 24/7 support around CLIQ solutions.
Legacy rail security systems pose a challenge
Abloy has chosen to specifically focus on the rail industry, as this vertical market is undergoing many challenges with Digital Transformation. Digitalisation links trains, track, yards, logistics and stations in a complex ecosystem and provides valuable data to railway operators. The ecosystem covers assets such as locomotives and other rolling stock, signalling infrastructure and railway stations.
New innovations in the rail industry feature not only intelligent locomotives, but also intelligent access management and control, as well as electronic locking systems.
“The Digital Transformation in rail transport operations is having a substantial effect on the security, reliability and costs of rail operations and efficiency,” said Pauli Jormanainen, Regional Director, Abloy.
However, rapid digitalisation is posing new challenges.
“There are many legacy systems still in use for security and safety. In addition to this, there is no single standardised global signal, track, infrastructure, security and safety regulation or format. Also, today there are more threats to security than the past with the rise of terrorism, vandalism and the risk of cyberthreats inherent with digitalisation,” said Ian Sacs, Market Manager at engineering, design and consultancy company, Ramboll. Sacs has been working with Abloy on many rail infrastructure projects.
Operational excellence for the rail industry with wireless access management
With recent, advanced electromechanical locking technology and access control management solutions, the above challenges are successfully managed. Abloy has recently helped several customers in achieving operational excellence, resulting in increased savings, security, safety and manageability.
“With modern access control systems and locks, you can manage all your staff, contractors and suppliers using one key access to all areas. For example, with our PROTEC2 CLIQ access management, you can control and schedule access remotely. You also have an audit trail of all the tracked movements for all key holders. All wireless connections are encrypted and secure,” said Jormanainen.
“ABLOY electric locks and padlocks are some of the most advanced in the world. Based on a rotating disc cylinder, our PROTEC2 CLIQ access control and locking system combines the best parts of the electronic and mechanical worlds. The disc cylinder is perfectly suited to the challenging conditions of railways, including exposure to dust, rain and ferrite,” Jormanainen concluded.