Zwipe, a company focused on the development of secure, fast and easy-to-use biometric authentication solutions, has announced a plan to raise up to NOK120m ($13.7m) via private and public equity.
Zwipe, which was established in 2009, plans to commercialize Zwipe-enabled biometric payment cards in the second half of 2019 followed by continued scale-up in 2020 and beyond.
Zwipe CEO André Løvestam said: “These are truly exciting times. Biometric payment cards enabled with Zwipe technology offer consumers the convenience of contactless and the security and peace of mind of biometrics. 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.”
The offering will be two tranches and is expected to raise up to NOK120m ($13.7m) by issuing 6 million new ordinary shares at a fixed price of NOK20 ($2.33)per share.
Zwipe stated that its technology aims to address data theft risks that are generally associated with traditional authentication methods, while providing secure user experience.
In the past, the firm partnered with payment services providers such as Gemalto and Silone CardTech to accelerate its biometric technology.
Presently, it is conducting several biometric payment card pilots across Europe and the Middle East. These pilot studies are being supported by industry stakeholders VISA, Mastercard and Gemalto, and comprise several large international banks, including Banca Intesa Sanpaolo.
In the long term, Zwipe aims to deploy its biometric authentication solutions across several form factors, such as wearables, within several different verticals including payment, access control and government identification.
The first tranche will be in the form of private placement offered to existing shareholders in the company and some new investors in Norway and Sweden, who have committed to buy a total of 4.5 million shares, amounting to NOK90m ($10.3m).
The second tranche, which amounts to NOK30m ($3.4m), will be in the form of public offering of up to 1.5 million shares to retail investors. Existing shareholders in Zwipe who have not been allocated offer shares in the private placement can buy the shares in this round.
The application period will begin on 10 January this year and end on 17 January.