Although the official Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority records show more than 9 000 “active” security companies, the sector is far more concentrated than those figures would suggest.
The top 10 companies employ 25% of the 445 000 “active” security officers registered with the Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority.
The big four foreign-owned companies have roughly 30 000 employees.
But there are an astonishing 2 million people registered as security officers – the majority of whom were either never actually employed or have left the industry.
That means something like 10% of South Africa’s entire labour force between the ages of 15 and 65 have either looked for work or have actually worked in the private security sector.