How was the company created?
The idea of developing his own security systems came to Aleksandr Konotopskyi, founder of Ajax Systems, at the age of 21. At that time, Aleksandr managed Secur — one of the largest distributors of security products in Ukraine. The company procured many devices from China, and their quality was often questionable.
For example, customers complained that a Chinese-made siren stopped working a month after installation. After disassembling the device with an engineer friend, Aleksandr found out that the sound appliance was designed for 2 amperes, while the installed transistor was only for 1.
That moment changed my perspective. A Chinese factory with 400 employees couldn’t solve the problem I had grappled with for a year. Yet, my classmate understood it in 15 minutes.
Aleksandr Konotopskyi, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Ajax Systems
Aleksandr then concluded that if an ordinary graduate from a Ukrainian technical university could outperform a global manufacturer, it was worth competing with the Chinese.
Where does the name come from?
I am a big fan of Greek mythology, which led me to the character Ajax. I thought it was great; the word starts with ‘A’ and ends with ‘X.’ Plus, the name positions us at the top of alphabetical lists.
Aleksandr Konotopskyi, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Ajax Systems
Why is manufacturing located in Ukraine and not in China?
The main production facilities of Ajax Systems are in Ukraine. Although components for devices are sourced from around the world, all stages of manufacturing, from soldering transistors to packaging ready-to-use products, take place in Ukraine.
By centralizing production, Ajax Systems maintains expertise and ensures quality control for products that are crucial for people’s safety. This approach also provides flexibility for rapid adaptations and adjustments to processes.
Video of production in Ukraine: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=luzKuxWRjHs
What devices does Ajax produce?
Ajax product line includes over 135 wireless and wired devices for protection against intrusion, fire, and flood, as well as devices for comfort and productivity. In 2023, the company also introduced its own product line of video surveillance devices for the first time.
A hub, the system’s central unit, coordinates connected devices and communicates with users and security companies. Devices such as motion, door/window opening, smoke, leakage, glass break, and air quality detectors, sirens, touch keypad, panic buttons, smart switches, plugs, and relays can be connected to the hub.
The security system can be managed via iOS, Android, macOS, and Windows apps.
What are Ajax Systems' innovations?
Jeweller is a two-way radio technology for connection between the Ajax system devices. It operates at 868.0–868.6 MHz (or 868.7–869.2 MHz, depending on the sales region), transmitting signals up to 2,000 meters away. It features automatic signal power regulation (up to 25 mW) and uses the time-division multiple access (TDMA) method. The device’s ping is 12–300 seconds, depending on settings. This technology is based on the address capacity of devices and includes block encryption featuring a dynamic key. Alarms are delivered in less than 0.15 seconds.
Wings is a two-way radio technology for transmitting images from MotionCam motion detectors with visual alarm verification to the hub. It can transmit images up to 1,700 meters and delivers the first shot in 9 seconds. This technology works alongside Jeweller.
OS Malevich is a real-time operating system (RTOS) designed for Ajax central units. It has a mechanism, similar to Linux, for CPU time allocation and modularity. It supports connection to the cloud server, manages up to 150 devices, and can simultaneously transmit alarms and events via IP channels, as well as make calls or send SMS. It also supports automation devices and scenarios, has features to counter software failures and cyberattacks, and is virus-resistant. The system updates automatically over the air (OTA).
SmartDetect is a digital algorithm for filtering false alarms of motion detectors. This algorithm analyzes the infrared sensor signal, eliminating reactions to pets and other thermal interference.
LISA is a two-stage digital algorithm for preventing false alarms of MotionProtect Outdoor and MotionCam Outdoor motion detectors. It analyzes the signals from two infrared sensors, comparing the similarity of their forms. Additionally, it can perform spectral analysis, comparing the frequency components of the signals from the two sensors.
HazeFlow is an algorithm for verifying smoke presence in fire detectors. Ajax fire detectors remain active 24/7, irrespective of the security mode. They can be synchronized with each other and signal danger via built-in sirens, app notifications, SMS, and calls.
In how many countries is the product distributed? Which ones generate the most revenue?
Ajax is sold in 169 countries worldwide. The top 10 markets with the highest sales volumes for the company are Ukraine, Spain, Italy, France, the Netherlands, the UK, Portugal, Denmark, Germany, and Belgium.
What keeps you competitive in global markets?
The answer is simple: a strong product.
Reliability is crucial for security companies. The Ajax system’s reliability is backed by certificates and high ratings from independent laboratories. Professionals value Ajax for its dependable radio communication, quick installation, and remote configuration via the app.
For a user, Ajax is a modern gadget. The system is unlike faceless and overcomplicated security equipment. The design of the devices fit both modern loft and classic interiors. There’s no need for disruptive wiring renovations, and managing Ajax via a smartphone is intuitive and simple.
What awards and certificates does Ajax have?
Ajax has been recognized at major specialized exhibitions, including IFSEC, Expoprotection, and Intersec. The company has also won prestigious awards from top industry media such as PSI Magazine and GIT Security. Today, Ajax is one of Europe’s most awarded security systems.
Ajax devices are European certified and adhere to international safety system standards, including EN 50131, PD 6662:2017, and the fire standard EN 14604, among others. The system is certified with Grade 2 (wireless devices) and Grade 3 (wired devices).
What investments has the company received?
$1 million from the SMRK fund
In June 2015, Ajax Systems secured its first investment of $1 million from SMRK, a Ukrainian venture fund established by MacPaw CEO Oleksandr Kosovan and entrepreneur Andriy Dovzhenko.
The company used the investment to turn Ajax into a comprehensive, integrated security system.
$10 million from Horizon Capital
In March 2019, Horizon Capital invested $10 million in Ajax Systems. In fact, the investment came from the Emerging Europe Growth Fund III, Horizon Capital’s third fund focusing on Ukrainian companies. Horizon acquired a portion of Ajax Systems’ stake from the SMRK venture fund and the company’s management.
Elena Kosharnaya, the Head of Horizon Capital, mentioned their interest was piqued by Aleksandr Konotopskyi’s vision for the product, the company’s results, its innovative product range, and its success in serving clients both in Ukraine and abroad.
The long-term goal of the partnership is to take Ajax Systems on IPO.
How many employees does the company have, and where are its offices located?
Ajax Systems continues to grow and develop, currently employing over 2,700 people. HQ and the main R&D office are located in Kyiv, Ukraine. The company also has R&D offices in Kharkiv, Vinnytsia, and Lviv. Representative offices are present in Spain, Italy, the UK, Germany, France, the Netherlands, UAE, South Africa, the USA, and other countries.
How does Ajax’s production impact the environment?
The company’s ISO 14001: 2015 ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS certification ensures minimal environmental impact from production and finished products. There are no harmful emissions or industrial effluents during Ajax’s manufacturing, as confirmed by sanitary protocols. Batteries not used in devices are sent for recycling.
The choice of components and materials is determined not only by their function but also by manufacturers’ RoHS Directive compliance, ensuring environmentally safe recycling and disposal.