Growing concern about the cost of crime is driving business at a new Inverness firm installing CCTV mointoring systems.
VU Safety, a new wing of 40-year-old local firm VU Games, has in the past 12 months installed systems from Skye to Aberdeen and south as far as Aberfeldy.
Alan Finlay, former Royal Bank of Scotland regional manager of retail banking for the North of Scotland, acquired VU Games nine years ago when American founder Mike Knox returned across the Atlantic.
VU Games, which employs ten people and has a £600,000 turnover, has supplied and maintained TV systems, fruit machines, pool tables, quiz machines and music systems to pubs, hotels, clubs conference centres and offices throughout the Highlands and Islands.
Mr Finlay said: ‘We saw a market opportunity in CCTV systems and set up VU Safety, using systems sourced in the UK and installed by our own skilled engineers.
“Now sales are well ahead of projections and we’re extremely pleased. Initially, we were selling the cameras to our own customer base in the licensed trade, but we’re now experiencing great demand from the wider business and commercial sector.
“Compared to national suppliers, we’re local and small enough to care while being big enough to do the job effectively with qualified people in a market where there are ‘cowboys’ about.
“Customer feedback shows there is enhanced concern and awareness of the danger, damage and disruption that can be caused by break-ins and similar crimes.
“That concern, and our ability to provide a reliable service, is driving our new market forward.”
He continued: “We provide systems tailored to each customer’s needs – from one camera to twenty cameras. We can design a system around a client’s budget.
“Our fitters have great experience in installing TV and sound systems, in the VU Games business, so the skill set required is the same.
VU Games and VU Safety are based at Seafield Road, Inverness, and is set to employ a further two members of staff to cope with the growth of the VU Safety business.