NEXT Biometrics fingerprint tech Aadhaar certified, expects revenues beginning Q4

Following a long and rigorous testing process, NEXT Biometrics fingerprint sensor solution has received hardware certification for India’s Aadhaar government ID program, enabling the Norwegian biometrics firm to accelerate sales activity to India’s government ID market, with initial revenue expected to be recognized in the fourth quarter.

The certification received by NEXT Biometrics comes from the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Directorate of Standardisation Testing and Quality Certification (STQC). The testing for Aadhaar participation requires certification for the hardware device and a separate certification for each version of software that runs on the hardware platform.

“The certification of NEXT’s fingerprint sensor technology by the Government of India is a confirmation of the reliability, security and convenience of our sensors,” cpommented Ritu Favre, CEO of NEXT Biometrics. “Delivering products for the Aadhaar program is an important part of NEXT’s business strategy and we look forward to a long and successful relationship helping the government provide services for the people of India.”

According to the announcement, the total market opportunity in India for fingerprint sensors in the government ID segment is projected to be 3 to 4 million units annually, growing to 5 to 10 million units on an annual basis by 2022. NEXT will now finalize software development and certification for various user platforms and expects to start generating revenue in the fourth quarter, and ramp additional products in 2019.

The company’s product roadmap calls first for sales of “Scallop” fingerprint readers later this year, followed by sensor modules used in devices like POS terminals for the Aadhaar market in the first half of 2019. An encrypted highly secure fingerprint reader is expected to be introduced in H2 2019, followed by the encrypted version of a sensor module in H1 2020. The encrypted products will comply with “Level 1” specifications from the UIDAI and are being designed to support broader use of Aadhaar for payments.

At NEXT Biometrics ‘Capital Markets Day’ on March 1st, management indicated it had “pivoted” the focus of the company’s development to smart cards and government ID and that tests organized by the India STQC Test Institute for certification on the Aadhaar project were moving along.

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