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Synaptics acquisition of Validity fingerprint ID pays off


Synaptics’ acquisition of fingerprint identification firm Validity last November is quickly paying off, with shares of Synaptics doubling in the past 12 months, according to a report by Barron’s.

In October 2013, Synaptics announced it would acquire Validity for $255 million as its foray into the highly lucrative biometrics market.

Considering Synaptics manufactures human interface sensors for electronic devices, it was a wise strategic move for the company to acquire fingerprint identification technology to integrate into its devices.

As a result of its newly acquired technology, the company now refers to itself as a provider of “human interface solutions.”

Fingerprint revenue now accounts for 22% of Synaptics’ total sales. Soon after the acquisition, Samsung Electronics struck a deal with Validity to manufacture the fingerprint sensor for its new Galaxy S5 smartphone.

“When we closed Validity, we didn’t know Samsung would be a customer,” Synaptics CEO Rick Bergman told Barron’s. “We had to secure that design win. That was a big bet that paid off.”

Synaptics continues to be optimistic about the growth of the fingerprint sensors market, estimating that it will grow exponentially from the 30 million units sold industry-wide in 2013 to 530 million units in 2016.

“Virtually every mobile customer or PC customer out there is looking at additional biometric or fingerprint solutions,” Bergman said in a recent investors conference call.

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