An agreement between site protection provider Orbis Protect and the makers of the UK’s most secure smart key safe is set to significantly improve security for site managers and FM staff across the country. Orbis Protect has agreed an exclusive distribution deal with Keynetics, the makers of the Bluetooth-enabled SentriKey®, to offer a full-proof security solution for thousands of contractors across the UK. Secure key management system It benefits users by saving time, increasing security and cutting costs, as it can be used up to 6,000 times" The agreement will see Orbis distribute the UK’s only commercially accredited Bluetooth-enabled key safe to its growing client list. The patented technology of SentriKey® is the only access solution on the market that provides flexible, traceable, easy and secure access using a mobile device. It is made of chromium molybdenum aircraft-graded steel, offering the most secure key safe on the market. Guy Other, CEO of Orbis Protect, said: “We’ve harnessed the power of Bluetooth technology and significant software engineering experience to create the most advanced easy-to-use and secure key management system on the market. It benefits users by saving time, increasing security and cutting costs, as it can be used up to 6,000 times, over a three year period.” Integrated lone worker protection “SentriKey® offers reports detailing access control by property managers, maintenance teams and contractors, which can be useful in any HR or insurance cases. This full-proof security solution will benefit those working on-site, as the system also offers an enhanced level of safety with integrated lone worker protection.” Our partnership with Orbis Protect, will seamlessly integrate SentriKey® into Orbis Protect’s day-to-day operations Stuart Wheeler, Managing Director at Keynetics, said: “Our exclusive partnership with Orbis Protect, one of Europe’s largest vacant property services companies, will seamlessly integrate SentriKey® into Orbis Protect’s day-to-day operations and service offerings, including safety-critical ecosystems, key storage, on-site security and data analysis.” Alarm integrated device “SentriKey® and Orbis Protect intend to collaborate on future cloud, digital and workspace security transformation technologies, with scope to be used by wider industries.” Orbis is launching three SentriKey® Lockbox options including a wall mount, portable configuration and alarm integrated device. SentriKey® has been approved by the Loss Prevention Certification Board (LPCB), the International Certification Body in the fields of security and fire protection. It is the only key safe in the World to have achieved the esteemed C1 security rating, making it the most secure key safe available on the market and the only one accredited for use on commercial buildings.
Globally renowned property protection provider Orbis Protect has joined forces with E.ON, one of the UK's top energy suppliers, to support its drive to tackle the UK’s housing shortage by bringing empty homes back into use. Orbis-E.ON partnership Orbis Protect is partnering with E.ON on the scheme and will provide specialist clearance and cleaning of any empty properties, externally and internally. With 605,000 empty homes in England – more than 200,000 of which have been declared long-term empty properties – the scheme is offering help to owners with properties that haven’t been lived in from anywhere between six months to 10-15 years. Guy Other, CEO of Orbis Protect, said, “There are a number of reasons why private property owners leave homes empty and there are varying conditions and states of repair that we can help with. Sometimes people feel there is too much to do, they don’t have the time or the skills to bring the property up to standard. With our level of expertise, we can tackle anything from major clearance and cleaning, to vital safety checks.” Through our work, we’ve seen first-hand the impact empty homes can have on the communities around them" Enhancing home property security Andrew Angus, Housing Solutions Manager at E.ON, said, “Although we have been doing this for many years working, within the social housing and commercial sectors, it’s a skill we are easily able to transfer to private properties and we are really pleased to be working with E.ON and the council on this pilot scheme.” Andrew adds, “Through our work, we’ve seen first-hand the impact empty homes can have on the communities around them and this service can help support them and bring much-needed homes back to use. We hope to be able to offer this solution to other local authorities across the country over the coming months.” Safe and secure access Following stringent checks, the dedicated Orbis team will also make sure the properties are safe and accessible for other service providers in order bring the houses back to a decent standard. Orbis Protect has a skilled and experienced team already working with a number of social housing providers and deals with 100,000 empty properties each year. This service has not been undertaken effectively for privately-owned properties before now. E.ON offers a free survey to private owners of empty properties to establish what is needed to bring the property back up to standard and once complete, can fully manage the refurbishment work to ensure the property is once again habitable.
Orbis’ new white paper is aimed at property owners and those with interest in property guardianship Property guardians, individuals acting as house-sitters for inhabitable empty properties, provide a cost-effective security solution for landlords concerned about the security of empty commercial or social housing properties. They also deliver a valuable contribution towards society. Without the guardianship option, the Government would have to find homes for the 4,000 people who currently perform the guardian role, and key workers would struggle to find homes near their work which would affect public services. That’s the conclusion of a white paper on property guardians from vacant property expert Orbis. With many people struggling to pay market rents and a rising number of empty properties thanks to the recession, the introduction of property guardians – who rent a property such as an office, warehouse, or council house from between two weeks and two years at low cost – is a natural market evolution. The white paper explores the drivers towards property guardians, the different types of people who opt to be guardians, the risks involved for both guardian and property owner; and provides best practice recommendations about what needs to change to make the experience fairer for all parties. It is aimed at property owners, people considering becoming guardians, and those with an interest in property guardianship. “Orbis see an opportunity to bring consistency, quality and experience to guardian safety and the delivery of a professional product, which hasn't always been present with the current providers of guardian services,” says Guy Other, CEO of Orbis. “This will allow potential users of guardians, who have so far been nervous about the standards in the industry, to use guardians with confidence.” "Orbis see an opportunity to bring consistency, quality and experience to guardian safety and the delivery of a professional product, which hasn't always been present with the current providers of guardian services" The document calls for clear and compliant standards, particularly around guardian recruitment. A guardian should be: Employed A non-smoker Pet and child free At least 25-years-old A UK or an EU national DBS checked Able to secure their application with a £500 bond, which can be used to cover penalties if necessary High standards of property selection are also needed. The property should: Be secure. This might require locks to be changed, non-secure entrances to be repaired or covered and windows to be repaired Comply with fire regulations. At the absolute minimum, there must be a means of escape in the event of a fire Be wind and water tight and have electricity and running water Have been adapted for residential use with a bathroom and kitchenette
The acquisition signals a shift in VPS’s centre of gravity from the UK to Europe The Vacant property management experts Orbis’ CEO, Guy Other, responded to the acquisition of VPS. On 25 June 2014 PAI Partners SAS, one of France’s largest private equity firms, announced that it had agreed to buy the UK and European operations of vacant property management firm VPS Holdings from TDR Capital, another private equity firm. TDR Capital, which acquired VPS in 2010, is believed to be retaining the company’s US operations. The news perhaps signals a shift in VPS’s centre of gravity from the UK, where its headquarters is based, to Europe. PAI, which has offices across Europe including Paris, Luxembourg, Madrid, Milan, Munich and Stockholm, concentrates exclusively on pan-European deals and although around half of VPS’s business is in the UK, Europe is likely to be the new owner’s focus. Hopefully the acquisition of VPS, by another private equity firm, does not imply more short-term thinking, with a focus on the next three to four years, rather than a more long-term strategic approach offered by non-equity firm buyers. However we welcome the news that VPS, which has long been looking for a new purchaser, has found an investor, and look forward to working with the new owners in the competitive vacant property management marketplace.