Zwipe to raise up to NOK 120M with plan to go public

Zwipe is planning to raise up to NOK 120 million (roughly US$14 million) as it prepares to apply for admission to the Oslo Børs’ multilateral trading facility (MTF) Merkur Market.

The industry-leading energy harvesting and power management technology and strategic partnerships formed over the last couple of years, including with Gemalto and Silone CardTech, contribute to Zwipe’s leadership position in the biometric card market, according to a company announcement. Zwipe technology is being trialed in multiple biometric payment card pilots in Europe and the Middle East, supported by VISA and Mastercard, including with Banca Intesa Sanpaolo, one of the world’s 50 largest banks.

Referring to the market potential of biometric payment cards, Zwipe CEO André Løvestam says: “With a mission of Making Convenience Secure, Zwipe is the first mover and technology leader in our field. We are partnering with global leaders and are well protected with a strong IP portfolio. We are preparing for a commercial breakthrough for our biometric payment card solution in the second half of 2019 and accelerating growth in 2020 and beyond, both within biometric payment cards, wearables and other form factors and verticals. With a strengthened balance sheet and shareholder base, we will be well positioned to capture the opportunities ahead.”

A recent report from research firm Edgar Dunn and Company forecasts the addressable market for biometric dual interface payment cards to reach 150 million by 2021, 870 million in 2023, and 6.8 billion in 2027, Zwipe says.

The company is aiming to commercialize its biometric cards in the second half of 2019, before scaling up. It also intends to deploy it biometric authentication technology to wearables and other form factors, for verticals including payments, access control, and government identification.

Zwipe has raised a total of NOK 241.3 million ($27.6 million) since it was founded in 2009, and recently received a EUR 2.3 million grant from the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 program to scale and commercialize its operations.

The offering will be issued in two tranches of up to 6 million new ordinary shares, combined, with a fixed price of NOK 20.00 per share. The first offering is exclusive to existing shareholders in Sweden and Norway, with a pre-commitment for 4.5 million shares, raising three-quarters of the hoped-for funds. The second tranche will be offered to retail investors and existing investors not included in the private placement.

The first day of trading is expected to be on or about January 28, 2019.

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