Samsung video surveillance equipment has been deployed at one of the most exciting retail environments to have opened in London in recent years.
M&M’s World® London, which is owned by the Mars Retail Group, can lay claim to be the largest confectionary store in the World. It occupies a 35,000 sq. ft. four storey building where customers have the opportunity to buy M&M’s® chocolates and branded merchandise such as soft toys, kitchenware, clothing, bedding, jewellery and glassware. Located in Leicester Square, it is the first M&M’s World London World to open in Europe and features a giant wall of chocolate where customers can create their own M&M’s selection from over 100 choices.
Daniel Clare is a Loss Prevention Specialist for M&M’s World London. As such he has the responsibility of managing a security team which is tasked with detecting shoplifters and other would be trouble makers who are tempted to enter the Leicester Square store. His job title, however, does not comprehensively cover the full extent of his workload, as he is also responsible for compliance with the company’s Health & Safety policy and also performs the role of Facilities Manager.
“This is a colourful, lively store which customers enjoy visiting,” said Daniel Clare. “A key objective for us therefore is to operate an effective security regime which is capable of deterring thieves, as well as creating a safe and secure environment for customers and staff, and which does not negatively impact on the store’s fun atmosphere”.
The store employs a team of highly trained security officers who discretely guard the store whilst meeting and greeting visitors. Very early on in the process of designing the layout of the store it was decided to invest in the very latest video surveillance technology to complement and support the activities of the security offices. “We wanted a camera system which could capture and record video of any criminal activity to pass onto the police. The company’s experience at our other three stores located in the US had taught us that a properly specified and installed surveillance system can be a very powerful tool which can help security personnel make fast and effective decisions if and when an incident occurs.” said Daniel Clare.
The contract to design and install the video surveillance system was awarded to Wembley based Technica Systems Ltd. Established in 1984 and with its head office in Wembley, NSI Gold accredited Technica Systems has built up an enviable reputation for successfully installing sophisticated electronic security solutions for a long list of prestigious clients.
Technica Systems installed 10 fully functional Samsung speed dome cameras, the images from which, together with the images captured by a large number of fixed cameras, are recorded onto one of seven SRD-1670D DVRs. All of the SRD-1670D DVRs are networked together and controlled by a Samsung SPC-6000 keyboard allowing live or recorded images to be viewed on one of seven SMT series high definition LCD Samsung monitors.
“M&M’s World London placed a lot of importance in providing its security personnel with the best possible tools for the job in hand and that meant selecting cameras which featured the very latest technology,” said Harvey Jacobs, Installation Manager for Technica Systems. “Having successfully worked with Samsung cameras on other installations gave us the confidence to recommend them for this particular project, and I am pleased to say that our decision has been vindicated by the fact that the client is highly delighted with the performance of the dome cameras and the other equipment.”
Eight of the dome cameras installed are Samsung SPD-2700s which have a 27 x zoom capability providing M&M World’s security personnel with the ability to closely observe any suspicious activity. The other two domes are Samsung 25 x zoom SCP-2250s, which incorporate true day/night cameras and feature Intelligent Video Analytics (IVA).
The seven SRD-1670D DVRs are each equipped with seven terabytes of on-board storage and collectively are able to record and store high resolution full frame rate images from all of the cameras for thirty days.
The cameras are monitored 24/7 from an in-store control room. The networking capability of the SRD-1670Ds, however, can allow M&M’s World’s senior management based in the US to observe live images or retrieve recorded video captured by any of the cameras. “This is a great feature which adds substantially to the return on our investment in the system,” said Daniel Clare. “It means that as well as helping us with our security requirements, our merchandisers, for example, can obtain valuable information on customer buying patterns whilst working from their offices in the US.”
Daniel Clare and his colleagues have quickly become big fans of a camera system which has already led to the detection of a large number of would-be shoplifters. “Apart from opportunistic thieves, this part of London sadly suffers from the activities of a large number of pickpockets,” said Daniel Clare. “The video surveillance system has been extremely useful in helping us spot these pickpockets and we have been able to provide evidence to the police which has led to successful arrests and prosecutions.”