The Axis story
True entrepreneurship and high standards
Axis Communications was formally founded in 1984 by Mikael Karlsson, Martin Gren and Keith Bloodworth. We started life as an IT company, but with a bit of a difference – we adopted an indirect sales model. This allows our experts to focus on developing innovative products that meet end customers’ needs, while our partners can provide an extra layer of dedicated customer support.
This model has resulted in Axis becoming the market leader in network cameras and video encoders. Today, we’re driving network video development, providing a variety of network video products to the market and smoothing the transition from analog to digital solutions.
The moments that made us
1984-1990 – IBM mainframe and minicomputer print servers
Our first product was a protocol converter that enabled the connection of PC printers to IBM mainframe 3270 networks. Despite being the last entrant to the market, we were number two in the world thanks to our innovative products. During this period, we also opened our first US subsidiary.
1990-1995 – A leader in networking technology for printers
During the emergence of the Internet, we were pioneers in network connectivity. With a focus on TCP/IP printing and later multi-protocol print servers – another Axis industry first – we grew at a rapid pace. We released our first ETRAX® chip, established offices in Asia and became number two in the industry.
1995-1998 – Network access to everything
Our focus was to make networks smarter, enabling more and more hardware to be connected simply and economically to IP networks. In 1995, we successfully launched a network optical storage solution and became the world’s leading supplier in this category. Our “Thinserver technology” is known around the world today as the Internet of Things (IoT).
1996 – The world’s first network camera
Next, came one of our biggest milestones – we invented the world’s first network camera. It revolutionized the industry, transforming video surveillance from analog into digital. Equally important was our decision to retain our indirect sales model, revolutionizing the way the CCTV industry operates.
1998-2002 – The world’s first video encoder
We continued to extend IP connectivity to more types of hardware, such as the first video encoder (1998). Video encoders were a huge milestone, allowing users to integrate their existing analog CCTV system with the latest IP technology. Another major milestone was the introduction of the world’s most popular network camera at that time, the AXIS 2100, which held the top spot for five consecutive years.
2002-2010 – A time of innovation
By 2002, we had successfully transformed from a connectivity specialist into the global number one in the network video market. We combined our know-how for developing core technologies and products, with an open-standards approach, a strong business model and key partnerships.
In 2004, we launched our Axis partner program; introduced the first network camera equipped with Power over Ethernet (PoE) and MPEG-4 compression; and launched the first HDTV resolution network camera.
2010 onwards – Global acclaim
In 2010 came another Axis world-first – thermal network cameras. And, in 2011, we launched the revolutionary Lightfinder camera – the world’s most light sensitive camera. It received the Wall Street Journal Technology Innovation Award in 2012. A year later, we entered the physical access control market with the first non-proprietary and open IP-based access controller with built-in web-based software.
Today, we’re focusing on a new wave of innovation. We’re continuously making advances in light sensitivity, dynamics, color reproduction and resolution in our network cameras. Beyond that, we’re also successfully moving into new markets, such as access control. We’re driven by our vision to come up with new, innovative, smart solutions that meet user needs – and we’ll expand our portfolio to keep achieving that.