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Market difficulties take Tascent

Categories Biometrics News  |  Trade Notes
Market difficulties take Tascent
(Tascent multi-modal biometrics scanners in use at Woodlands Checkpoint in Singapore last July.)

Multimodal biometric identification company Tascent has folded.

Its tombstone will not be markedly different than many other companies in its niche. It appears to have been in the wrong part of its own business cycle when the industry cycle sagged.

Its management appears to have been better at stretching funding than average.

It was launched on the outskirts of Silicon Valley in 2015 by Alastair Partington and Joey Pritikin. Its products encompassed hardware, software and services, and it developed iris and eventually face biometrics. Pritikin left to join Paravision in October 2019.

Partington reflected on the experience in a Medium post which suggests Tascent struggled to establish the kinds of manufacturing partnerships that could support its scaling operation.

Altogether, Tascent raised $38 million in two round. Series A was at the outset, in 2015 but the last one, series B was raised in 2018 – five years ago.

No less than NEC participated in the B, along with Min Aik Technology and leader Tano Capital (which funded the first round as well). Tano is an alternative asset manager. Min Aik is a Malaysian hardware maker. These three are the only investors holding the bag after the collapse, assuming there are outstanding balances.

PrivCo gave Tascent a post-money value range of $100 million to $500 million at the signing of the B series.

The company, with 15 patents, was active off United States shores, with contracts and trials in Nigeria, the Pacific Island nation Palau, Australia and Singapore.

Executives also went after travel and entertainment opportunities, including work with Royal Caribbean and the Chicago Cubs baseball team.

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