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Profile of Global Success

Online since 8.03.2017 • Filed under Building Systems - Automation • From Issue 20 page(s) 99-100
Profile of Global Success

A South African company has become one of the most important players in the global access automation arena.

 Unusual for a company its size, and with as many triumphs, Centurion Systems has never succumbed to hubris, but has always stayed remarkably true to its roots. Indeed, when taking a walk through its workspace or the company’s sprawling, labyrinthine factory in North Riding, Johannesburg, the visitor experiences the feeling of a close-knit family.


Despite Centurion’s endearing grassroots humility – or perhaps because of it – the company has become one of the most important players in the global access automation arena.


Centurion Systems has been pioneering gate automation and access control solutions since the mid-80s, and the company’s 30-year reign as one of the country’s – if not the world’s – leading manufacturers reached new heights last year when it caught the eye of FAAC, S.p.a, the largest access automation manufacturer in the world.


While a formal acquisition of the former by the latter company only materialised in 2016, the relationship between the two brands goes way back, as FAAC business unit director Jacopo Malacarne explains, speaking from the company’s headquarters in Bologna, Italy.


‘We recognised some time ago that, as an international company with more than 24 commercial subsidiaries worldwide and the necessity to diversify revenue generation, FAAC was not present enough on the African continent.


‘We could either have developed a tailor-made product offer for Africa and later have built a commercial presence, or we were to acquire a local, successful company. Our first thought was of Centurion which, before developing into an independent manufacturer, was a customer of FAAC’s in the early ‘80s. Centurion has, since then, become the clear market leader not only in South Africa, but also on the African continent below the Saharan belt.

The match was perfect, in other words.”


The resultant transaction has enabled both companies to diversify their product offerings and branch out into hitherto unexplored realms of the access automation universe, to the benefit of their respective and shared markets.


Updated industrial product ranges

Gate motors

Gate motors are an absolute staple of access automation and remain a reliable and cost-effective means of achieving access control and the accompanying security and convenience.


Centurion manufactures gate motors for both swing and sliding gates, with operators available for domestic, light-industrial and full industrial applications. Most of Centurion’s gate motors feature dependable battery backup and will continue working even during lengthy power outages.


The company’s best-known industrial gate operator, the D10 slider, boasts a hardy die-cast aluminium gearbox for maximum efficiency and reliability, a powerful 24V electric motor and, most significantly, an intelligent LCD interface offering a host of selectable features, as well as easy setup and advanced diagnostics.


The success and popularity of the D10 led to the development of a high-speed model, and in 2012 the aptly-named D10 Turbo saw the light with a lightningfast operating speed of 830mm/second.


Traffic barriers and accessories

Centurion’s traffic barriers are designed to handle very heavy traffic and can happily perform up to 3000 operations every single day, even during power failures. A beefy DC gearbox coupled with a tough-asnails housing and intelligent and feature-rich controller make Centurion barriers the automatic choice for access control points where vehicles enter and exit a lot. Roadway spikes and pedestrian barrier fences can also be added for a fully comprehensive access control systems.



Centurion has also added parent company FAAC S.p.a’s range of highly robust and reliable bollards to its own product offering, much to the delight of security integrators.


The FAAC bollard range includes solutions for vehicle traffic control in residential, commercial, industrial and urban areas and boasts FAAC’s celebrated hydraulic technology, as well as high-quality components ensuring exceptional performance and greatly simplified installation and maintenance.



T +27 (0)11 699 2400


Issue 20

Issue 20

March 2017

This article was featured on page 99-100 of
To Build Magazine Issue 20.

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