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Biometrics stocks wrap: Airside investment, Valid, NXP, Idex, OneSpan, SAFR, Nuance

Biometrics stocks wrap: Airside investment, Valid, NXP, Idex, OneSpan, SAFR, Nuance

Amadeus has made a strategic investment in Airside to integrate some of its components into the Amadeus Traveler ID platform to reduce friction in border checks, according to a company announcement.

The Airside Mobile Passport app is authorized by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and has been downloaded by more than 8 million passengers. The app can be used in more than 30 airports in the country, including most major international ones, by U.S. citizens and Canadians to pass through customs. Travelers can submit customs declarations ahead of time and access fast separate security lanes.

The app can also be used for other processes, such as booking transportation, boarding a cruise ship or remotely checking into a hotel room.

“This marks the first investment made by Amadeus Ventures this year. As with all our investments, it is centered around solutions that improve the passenger experience. Biometrics is a key trend for the industry, and one we feel has the potential to reshape air travel as we know it today. Airside has developed an innovative identity management solution that presents many opportunities to improve the passenger journey” said Suzanna Chiu, Head of Amadeus Ventures, Amadeus.

The companies say they share a focus on privacy, and the decentralized architecture of the Airside app returns control over data to users.

Valid reports strong year

Valid has reported net revenue of 2 billion Brazilian Reals (US$420 million) and EBITDA of R$309 million ($65 million) in full-year 2019. In its earnings report, company management said the first half of the year was challenging, but the second half showed the stability of its core business.

Full-year adjusted net profit for 2019 was R$91 million ($19.1 million), but due a change in reporting standard and other factors, the usual profit comparisons to previous years are not necessarily effective. Net revenue was up 15.8 percent.

For Q4 2020, Valid’s net revenue increased by 22.7 percent, year-over-year, to R$548.8 million ($115 million).

Net revenue during the year from foreign operations increased by 12.9 percent over 2018, and the company says its provision of digital identification cards in São Paulo reinforces its leadership position in Brazil’s secure identification market.

Valid acquired fintech BluPay, which specializes in technology for processing payments, in a deal announced in December.

The company also recently formed a partnership with Fingerprint Cards to develop contactless biometric payment cards.

New CEO and President for NXP

NXP Semiconductors is expected to approve the appointment of Kurt Sievers as the company’s new President and Chief Executive Officer at its next Annual General Meeting on May 27.

Sievers takes over for Rick Clemmer, who has led the company since 2009. Clemmer was praised for his role in establishing NXP’s industry leadership by NXP Chairman of the Board Sir Peter Bonfield.

Bonfield also credits Sievers with leading NXP to a leading market position in automotive semiconductors.

“At the beginning of NXP as an independent company, Rick and the Management Team set in motion NXP’s strategy to develop and profitably grow market leading and highly differentiated businesses,” Sievers comments. “Since the merger with Freescale we’ve been able to expand our footprint towards truly innovative solutions in The Internet of Things and Automotive. We leverage our focus on safe and secure edge computing along with connectivity and efficient power management. We have made great strides in our execution and I will stay true to this successful and winning strategy. As an organization, we will continue to passionately focus on our customers’ success based on trusted partnerships. We will foster a culture of innovation, collaboration and personal accountability that will result in highly engaged teams delivering profitable growth.”

Clemmer will remain in a strategic advisory position to ensure a smooth transition.

Idex Biometrics share purchase

Idex Biometrics has posted a mandatory notice that CFO Derek D’Antillo has exercised an option to purchase 250,000 shares at NOK 0.73 ($0.077) each. He now holds 350,000 shares and 2 million incentive subscription rights.

OneSpan adds cloud experience to board

OneSpan has added two new Directors with experience in banking, financial services, and cloud technology with leading companies to its Board, according to a company announcement.

Naureen Hassan, who has served as Chief Digital Officer of Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, and Marianne Johnson, EVP and Chief Product Officer of Cox Automotive, will join the board, bringing it to ten directors.

“OneSpan’s Board of Directors continues to expand its expertise in cloud-centric business models that deliver security and productivity to the financial services sector. These appointees bring depth in the design, development, and delivery of secure digital services at scale,” states OneSpan Board Chair, John N. Fox, Jr.

New SAFR SVP to lead Europe sales

SAFR from RealNetworks has appointed José Larrucea as its new Senior Vice President of International Sales and Business Development in the EMEA and Latin America regions.

Larrucea has been responsible for building the business in Latin America as VP for the region since 2017.

“The rapid adoption of a top-performing Facial Recognition solution like SAFR, coupled with smart processes, brings key benefits to multiple industries where situational awareness, efficiency in checkpoints and process streamlining are needed. I look forward to expanding SAFR’s AI capabilities and RealNetworks’ know-how into Europe,” says Larrucea.

Nuance wins GLOMO

Nuance Communications has announced that its Gatekeeper cloud biometrics solution has been recognized as the 2020 Global Mobile (GLOMO) Award winner as the “Best Mobile Authentication and Security Solution.”

The GLOMO Awards are handed out by the GSMA.

Judges noted that “frictionless user authentication makes for a strong value proposition, and the layering of different behavioral factors lends further confidence – this class of product will become pervasive,” according to the announcement.

“We thank the GSMA for this recognition and I am extremely proud of the Nuance team in continuing to advance the state of the art in biometrics with Gatekeeper,” comments Brett Beranek, GM and VP of Nuance Communications. “Fraud is a $4 trillion global problem and while the proliferation of digital channels drives convenience for customers, it can also open up massive vulnerabilities. With Gatekeeper our focus is to help organizations catalyze digital transformation while also modernizing their security approach to mitigate fraud.”

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