In 2016, a team from Cambridge, UCL and Imperial Universities came together in London to create Calipsa. They had seen the burden that false alarms place on the security industry and believed that by applying AI technology, they could make a real difference to crime prevention.

Calipsa’s technology has been developed into a unique cloud-based platform that uses machine learning technology to reduce the number of CCTV alarms and identify false alarms in real-time. With false alarm reduction of over 90%, the company is now the global leader in its sector, working with clients internationally.

We sat down with Calipsa’s CEO, Mohammad Rashid Khan, to discuss Calipsa’s plans for further developing its deep-learning technology and the opportunities he sees for AI in the security sector.


Calipsa Co-founder

Mohammad Rashid Khan, Calipsa’s CEO


Can you tell us a bit about what your company does, what problems you solve for your customers, and what you are focusing on at the moment?

Mohammad: Calipsa’s mission is to make the world a safer place by preventing thefts and burglaries. We help achieve this by automating the analysis of security camera footage using our AI platform. We protect over 20,000 properties in 14 countries covering a range of industries such as agriculture, construction, manufacturing, logistics, automotive, retail and many others.

How did you come up with the idea for Calipsa?

Mohammad: The inspiration for Calipsa started with a belief that AI will fundamentally change industries around us and that led to our desire to build a company using this technology. We tested our technology across a range of applications in various sectors and found that it was particularly suited to the security industry. For our customers, the problem was so big that they were willing to work with us even before we had a product.

Why is the video analytics platform you have developed so important in reducing false alarms, and what difference does it make to your users?

Mohammad: Security companies are traditionally labour intensive. Most of the time is spent either on: a) guards on-site or b) operators in a control room with responsibility for watching security camera footage and taking appropriate action. By reducing the number of hours of video an operator has to view, we have a big impact on operating margins and allow security companies to operate more effectively, increase productivity for their teams and help operators and guards to identify potential issues faster.

You have announced partnerships with leading global security companies and grown to operate in six countries, what’s next for Calipsa?

Mohammad: Calipsa started off working with security companies as the target customer but we see opportunities beyond this segment too. There are over one billion security cameras in the world today (500 million if you exclude China), and we think Calipsa can add value to at least 30% of those cameras. This will involve expanding our target customer base to understand their challenges and continuing to innovate to further develop our AI products.

How do you see your AI technology platform evolving in the future, are you working on new or enhanced applications?

Mohammad: We have a few exciting things on the roadmap that will be released in the next six months (we can’t disclose what they are yet!). These products will transition us from being seen as a “single product company” to a “solutions company” that specializes in video AI.

What do you look for in an investor? What makes Future Energy Ventures different?

Mohammad: First, and most importantly, is that the investors believe in the founders and their mission. This gives us comfort that we can reach out to our investors regardless of the challenges and opportunities that we face. Secondly, we always felt there was a strong strategic fit with FEV’s thesis around buildngs getting smarter in the coming years and our belief that AI will automate a lot of the ‘smart building’ processes. Financially, FEV has supported us in every round of funding and continues to connect us with other prospective investors too.

Future Energy Ventures’ view on Calipsa

FEV has supported Calipsa since the early days of the start-up’s journey and instantly bought into its vision of how to disrupt the security industry. Rashid and Boris have built an extremely powerful software platform that has a tremendous business impact for security firms, while also helping corporates from a wide range of sectors to protect their premises and property more effectively. We believe that Calipsa is in a strong position to capitalize on the current confluence of trends in the security market and are proud to support them on their journey.

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