ZKTeco USA’s biometric readers have been used by companies worldwide for the last two decades, but when the global pandemic emerged the company shifted its focus to making products that could help companies, organizations, and individuals stay healthy and safe during a very difficult time.
20 Years of Success
Founded in 1997, Atlanta-based ZKTeco started with a single factory in China and has since grown into a 90-branch company that sells, supports, and distributes its products to a global customer base.
A manufacturer of biometric readers that can identify an individual by his or her face, fingerprint, or palm vein, the company makes products that are used to track employee time and attendance, and also to control access to physical facilities. “We design and manufacture all the access control panels and readers,” says Larry Reed, ZKTeco’s CEO. “We also write the software, which is the brains behind the system.”
Deemed an essential business because it provides security services, ZKTeco added a new feature to its products after realizing that those software “brains” could be used to build equipment that incorporates in-house body temperature checks.
Their standalone readers have a variety of mounting options. They can rest on a reception desk, be mounted on a wall or a pole in the middle of the floor, or even attached to a turnstile. ZKTeco’s SpeedFace body temperature detection device is helping organizations readily identify and prevent anyone having an elevated temperature or not wearing a mask from entering their premises. “Body temperature screening and health check screening are probably the most sought after technologies today,” said Reed, “You can’t reopen schools & businesses without providing visitors some level of assuredness that everyone inside has normal body temperature.”
Serving a North American Distribution Base
At its U.S. headquarters in Atlanta, ZKTeco operates a 35,000-square-foot building of which about 10,000 feet is a warehouse that ships out thousands of products weekly. Those shipments are destined for 50 or so ZKTeco distributors located in 500 different stocking locations within the U.S. and Canada.
Most of these distributors have retail-type specialty stores focused on selling low-voltage security and AV equipment. Along with ZKTeco’s access control devices, the distributors also carry a variety of different products, including surveillance cameras, alarm systems, and cables that are manufactured by numerous different vendors.
“The installers or the contractors/dealers purchase our equipment and install it at end-user locations,” said Reed. “From a logistics perspective, we’re supplying all of our distributors from our Atlanta location.”
Seeking a logistics partner that could support those efforts, Reed learned about DB Schenker from ZKTeco’s Warehouse Manager, who encouraged him to learn more about the global logistics provider. He was instantly interested in working with DB Schenker.
“DB Schenker is so well known in the public domain, and their partnership adds tremendous value to the ZKTeco name, knowing we’re associated with DB Schenker,” said Reed. “It provides our customers additional confidence their products purchased will arrive timely and in perfect condition.”
An Eye on the Future
For ZKTeco, DB Schenker handles the logistics and shipping of the many orders that the manufacturer sends out to its distributors and dealers on a daily basis. On track to expand into additional warehouse and office space in 2021, the company wants to begin manufacturing some of its products in the U.S. as a way to increase efficiencies and reduce costs.
“Importing large, heavy devices like turnstiles, walk-through metal detectors and x-ray package scanners from overseas is very expensive,” said Reed. “We’re now entertaining the possibility of handling limited manufacturing and assembly here in the U.S., and expanding our operation.”
As for ZKTeco’s relationship with DB Schenker, Reed said it’s still in the early stages and that he looks forward to seeing how the two companies can work together in a win-win scenario. “Customers have put a lot trust in DB Schenker, and we’re delighted to be working with them,” said Reed. “We look forward to collaborating with DB Schenker to see how we can really complement one another, both during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.”