Fidelity Services Group (“Fidelity”), Southern Africa’s largest Broad Based Black Empowered (Level One Rated) Integrated Security and Risk solutions provider and the industry leader in protection innovation is providing much needed employment at a time when the economy is struggling and South Africa is facing large scale unemployment.
Wahl Bartmann, the Group Chief Executive Officer of Fidelity a Group employing in excess of 58 000 employees in over 160 points of presence across Southern Africa, believes that the security and related services sector, is continually evolving and innovating. This year alone Fidelity has expanded its bouquet of services and related products through an enhanced service offering which now includes comprehensive Asset Tracking, Cleaning Services and a comprehensive Fire Solutions division. “The Group can now customise solutions to address any requirement in pursuance of an integrated risk-based facilities management solution,” he says.
“There is no doubt that the market is tough but we are always looking to make new acquisitions that will add value to the business. Most of the acquisitions made recently are in the Monitoring and Armed Response sector (Fidelity ADT), but we are continually looking for acquisitions in all areas of security, cleaning, fire and related markets. We believe that these sectors remain an untapped marked within our Risk based integrated services bouquet and look forward to exponential growth in these markets,” he says.
Bartmann says in terms of employment Fidelity believes the industry needs to offer a truly integrated service which combines technological advances with manpower requirements. “One of our ongoing challenges on the manpower side is competitor companies who do not comply with legislated requirements, resulting in the under cutting of prices in the market place. “We’ve adopted a zero-tolerance policy in our pursuance of integrated security and services solutions and really encourage union involvement in the compliance process. Fortunately a new bargaining council has recently been established for the security industry. As soon as the new CEO for this bargaining council is appointed we believe we will see greater compliance.”
Looking forward, Bartmann believes the biggest growth area for the Group will be in their cash-in-transit and technology driven solutions business backed by a blend of facilities, cleaning and security to offer a comprehensive safety solution which will include our armed response customers at Fidelity ADT. The Cash Solutions business was acquired in 2015 from the Bidvest Group and has seen phenomenal growth. Bartmann says it definitely does not come without its challenges though and says that they urgently need to maintain reduced losses and vehicle bombings by strengthening their support teams and intelligence gathering. The Group is actively implementing a more aggressive attitude to cash losses and recovery thereof and invested millions of rands in this area. “Training and upskilling of employees forms part of this, as does talent acquisition and employee retention processes to recruit and retain the best talent, especially in our cash centers,” concludes Bartmann.