Company purchases to make its mark

Tuesday, February 1, 2005

TORONTO - Bioscrypt, a provider of identity verification technology, has acquired a fingerprint matching algorithm technology from Arete Associates for $1 million.

Bioscrypt had previously licensed the algorithms, which is a recognition technology based on finger pattern analysis, under an exclusive licensing agreement with Arete - adding up to $3.16 million in royalty payments paid over the life of the agreement. After the transaction is complete, Bioscrypt’s financial obligation to Arete will be complete.

“We decided at this time, based on the market, that the time was right to acquire the technology outright,” said Colin Souter, chief technology officer at the company.

The algorithm technology includes patents and trade secrets that were not previously purchased by Bioscrypt as part of the acquisition of Biometric Identification in 2001. Acquiring the technology also allows the company added flexibility.

“It really gives us a lot more freedom,” Souter said, “in where we are going as a company and makes it an integral part of our company’s offerings.”

The deal also confirms Bioscrypt’s commitment to working with pattern-based technology - commonly used in commercial applications. Along with buying the fingerprint matching algorithm technology, Bioscrypt signed an agreement to license the source code for a minutiae-based fingerprint recognition algorithm, which has a large market share in the forensic sector, from Paris-based Innovatrics. The company plans to use the technologies to support projects that require multiple standards.

“This is really showing the breadth of Bioscrypt’s offering,” said Souter. “It is appropriate to have both algorithms to address different programs.”

The technologies also assists the company - which currently employs 60 and expects to record $12.5 million in revenue for 2004, according to Matthew Bogart, director of investor relations with the company - with broadening its existing product lines.

“We are going to look at a lot of exciting opportunities,” Souter said. “The combination of both these technologies have allowed us to expand our product capabilities.”