Security firm seals big deal in Mongolia
A Belfast security firm has won business worth £750,000 in Mongolia - one of the farthest-flung export deals ever for a Northern Ireland firm.
CEM Systems, part of Tyco Security Products, is to supply its products, including fingerprint and swipecard readers, to the Oyu Tolgoi copper and gold mine in the country's South Gobi region - and the company says there is still room for more opportunity.
After announcing a £500,000 deal, the firm said this week another contract for an additional £150,000 had been signed.
The company is now working in 40 markets around the world.
Andrew Fulton, CEM's senior director of global sales, said very robust equipment was required because of conditions in the mine, which is the world's largest undeveloped copper-gold project.
"Temperatures can reach -50 in winter and 40 in the summer and they were looking for very robust equipment as you can imagine, and of course CEM can supply that.
"The potential for us is huge. As the mine grows we could easily see work for us growing over the £1m mark."
The mine is expected to increase Mongolia's GDP by 30% when completed.
Mr Fulton said there was a lesson in his company's success for all business.
"I suppose the message is that you have to get out of Northern Ireland and travel. Even in the UK, opportunities for us are drying up.
"I've been all over the world and am travelling to Auckland next week to discuss yet another potential deal."
He added: "Invest NI has been immensely supportive of successive business plans in terms of support for employment, research and development and marketing assistance for our participation in trade missions."
CEM has experienced annual growth of over 20% in the past three years in international markets and is now among the world's top five leaders in building security systems.
CEM employs 80 people at its headquarters in Belfast Harbour Estate and is known for its work in airport security around the world including at Heathrow and Hong Kong terminals.
The firm has also won contracts in recent months to work on all Indian sites owned by food giant Kraft and at King Khalid University Hospital in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Other recent business has been secured in Dubai, Nigeria, Poland and Hungary.
The mine is expected to increase Mongolia's GDP by this amount