Gemalto exec discusses the 3M Identity Management Business acquisition

May 4, 2017 - 

Earlier this week, Gemalto, a world leader in digital security, announced the closing of the acquisition of 3M’s Identity Management Business after approval by relevant regulatory and antitrust authorities.

The 3M Cogent business has been recognized for delivering some of the most fastest, reliable, accurate and sophisticated biometric identification solutions in the world. Gemalto believes their strategic acquisition will round out their government service offerings by adding biometric technologies and more secure document features.

3M’s Identity Management Business will be integrated into Gemalto’s government programs business. In 2016, the acquired business generated US$202 million in revenue and an estimated US$53 million in profit.

Neville Pattinson, SVP of Government Programs at Gemalto, told BiometricUpdate.com in exclusive interview that the combination of both businesses will ideally position Gemalto to provide impressive solutions for both the government and commercial biometrics market.

The combined Gemalto Cogent business will now offer more comprehensive security solutions across the public and commercial sectors by combining Gemalto’s expertise in secure documents and identity management with Cogent’s dominant biometric product offerings.

The acquisition extends Gemalto’s portfolio to include biometric readers for facial recognition, iris scanning and fingerprints, and the company will take over biometric ID verification for large customer implementations like the Department of Homeland Security’s US-VISIT program in airports and seaports, other nations’ border control efforts, and local law enforcement criminal forensics.

“We are excited about the acquisition because there is no overlap between the Gemalto and Cogent businesses,” said Pattinson. “The acquisition represents a great marriage and the best of two companies, since it allows Cogent technology to plug in seamlessly into our document solutions.”

“While Gemalto has historically been technology agnostic with its secure document solution offerings working with a wide array of products, the acquisition will provide the company with a portfolio of biometric readers, including new groundbreaking, touchless fingerprint scanners, that will deepen our understanding and capacity of system deployments.”

Pattinson noted that the combined Gemalto Cogent business could enable scenarios where a government issued photo ID can be integrated into livescan systems to identify and verify persons in real-time. Through the acquisition, the company now has access to livescan facial recognition surveillance technology that can identify 16 faces in public places in less than a second.

A key benefit of the deal, according to Pattinson is that “Gemalto can now quickly use its own internal biometric technologies without beien concerned about licenses or royalties.” Customers will therefore be able to take advantage of a one vendor perspective, but still take advantage of a spectrum of technology and expertise.”

The deal cements Gemalto place as a dominant player in the security ecosystem. Before the deal, the 15,000+ employee company generated US$3.39 billion from customers in over 180 countries.

“With the acquisition of 3M’s Identity Management Business, Gemalto makes a strategic move by in-sourcing biometric technology. Combining our market access, technologies and expertise will enable Gemalto to further accelerate the deployment of trusted national identities and to offer strong end-to-end biometric authentication solutions throughout the digital economy”, said Philippe Vallée, Gemalto CEO in statement. “I warmly welcome the new teams joining Gemalto and we look forward to working closely together towards success.”

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About Rawlson King

Rawlson O’Neil King is a contributing editor at BiometricUpdate.com and is an experienced communications professional, management consultant, trade journalist and author who recently published a book about control and electronic networks and who has written numerous articles in trade publications and academic journals about smart home and building technologies. Follow him @rawlsonking2.