Global Security Services

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Security Services

Global security service revenues are forecast to increase 4.4% per year to $295 billion in 2026, with most growth occurring in the first half of the forecast period due to strengthening economic environments as the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic fades. Though the most significant recovery from the pandemic-driven downturn already occurred in 2021, long-term growth prospects for the industry are quite healthy, as companies work to respond to an evolving social environment and provide increasingly complex technology-aided solutions.

Security Services Adapting to Uncertainty About Future Impact of Pandemic-Era Social Trends

While the overall effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on the global security services industry was negative, the impact on a segment-by-segment basis was complex and varied:

  • Spending on security guards was boosted in many countries by the need to enforce public health regulations.
  • Falling occupancy rates in commercial real estate shrank the market base, but reduced in-person presence at many facilities also created security risks that required solutions.
  • Concern about property crime – which is an important driver of security spending – broadly increased and was exacerbated by widespread rioting.

Many pandemic-driven restrictions have eased in the first half of 2022, and much of the world is transitioning public health policy to a more sustainable, non-emergency mode. However, some pandemic-era trends – such as the increased presence of security guards at facilities like grocery stores and more people doing remote work – have persisted, and the long-term effects on the security service market are complex. For example, more remote work increases building vacancy and the need for surveillance but could reduce the amount of space to monitor in the long term if companies abandon dedicated physical locations.

Systems Integration Continues to Drive Growth

Systems integration will continue to be the fastest growing segment of the global security services industry. Growth is being driven by the increasing prevalence of smart technology devices and building automation systems, which are providing systems integrators with opportunities in both commercial and residential markets.

The growth of systems integration is a major driver of acquisition activity, as the specialized technological skills required to serve this market are often outside the competencies of traditional security service providers. As this trend continues, the conventional distinction between physical security and cybersecurity is becoming increasingly blurred, and security service providers are increasingly being called on to develop new technological capabilities.

Market Consolidation Increasing in Wake of Pandemic

The market disruptions associated with the COVID-19 pandemic contributed to a high level of acquisitions in 2020 and 2021, as firms responded to the challenging environment by acquiring struggling competitors. Companies are facing a tight competitive environment, where acquisitions represent an important way to grow both market share and service competencies. Firms that wish to expand are thus required to closely monitor the status of smaller businesses to take advantage of acquisition opportunities ahead of competitors.

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