Top Three Handset Makers Endorse INSIDE’s Leadership in Nascent NFC Market
AIX-EN-PROVENCE, France, June 30th, 2008 – Extending its previously announced series C funding round, INSIDE Contactless, the world leader in advanced contactless microprocessor platforms, today added Samsung Ventures America to its active investor community, which now includes the world’s top three handset manufacturers. Samsung Ventures’ participation builds upon investments from Nokia Growth Partners, Motorola Ventures and other institutional investors, providing a total of nearly $42 million (€ 28 million) to allow the company to accelerate its international presence and broaden its product portfolio.
“The participation of the top three global handset manufacturers in this round of funding is a ringing endorsement of INSIDE’s leadership in the emerging near field communication (NFC) market, and gives us a strategic advantage with the key players in the industry,” said Rémy de Tonnac, CEO of INSIDE Contactless. “As the NFC market progresses, we are hopeful that these partnerships will prove invaluable in propelling us forward to power the NFC revolution and extend our leadership.”
According to a recent report from ABI Research, Near Field Communication (NFC) chipset shipments and revenue will continue to grow steadily over the next five years, with over 419 million NFC chipsets shipping in 2012, amounting to total market revenue of $406 million.
“We are optimistic about NFC technology’s ability to bring exciting new payment and other applications to mobile handsets, and INSIDE’s leadership in moving this market forward is impressive,” said Brian Kang, managing director of Samsung Ventures America. “Our investment expresses our confidence in INSIDE’s ability to continue its success not only in the contactless payment market but also in the emerging NFC technology for mobile phones.”
Samsung Ventures America now joins INSIDE’s existing investors which include Motorola Ventures, Nokia Growth Partners, HID Global, Sofinnova Partners, Vertex Management, Vertex Ventures, Siparex, GIMV, EuroUS Venture, Granite Global Ventures and Visa Ventures.
Introduced in February, 2008, the INSIDE MicroRead® RF chip was selected as the winner of the GSM Association’s (GSMA) 2008 Mobile Innovation Global Award for Most Innovative Device-Centric Technology. The MicroRead chip offers the broadest range of NFC options, complying with the ISO 14443 A/B/B’ standard, ISO 15693 and ISO18092, and NFC forum specifications, allowing a MicroRead-enabled device to be used not only for all traditional NFC applications, but also for new applications such as access control, logistics and tracking, as well as a wide range of legacy RFID applications.
INSIDE, together with other industry leaders, also was instrumental in developing the ETSI NFC-related standard, with the result that INSIDE now enjoys early implementation of these standards. The MicroRead IC is the first NFC chip to be both SIM- and SE-friendly.
The unique multi-host router technology built into the MicroRead chip provides the capacity to implement any secure element, including SIM, SE or SD card, to support any business model. MicroRead’s exclusive, self-powered “battery-off” mode provides simplicity and convenience to improve the user experience by enabling transactions to take place successfully even when the host device is turned off or the battery is completely drained. The low-power card detection mode also provides a unique, battery life optimized, pop-up application mechanism to avoid the need to browse a menu or press a button to launch an NFC-based application.
The MicroRead chip has been adopted by several major handset manufacturers across the globe, and is also a key component of the GSMA’s Pay-Buy-Mobile initiative, a program that provides a single approach to enabling contactless payments using mobile phones. Mobile operators in Australia, France, Ireland, Korea, Malaysia, Norway, The Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Turkey, and the U.S. have implemented the MicroRead chip in handsets used in the Pay-Buy-Mobile program.
About Samsung Ventures America
Samsung Ventures America manages US and Global investment and investment-related activities for Samsung Electronics and Samsung Venture Investment Corporation from local offices in San Jose. The investment mandate for Samsung Ventures America tracks closely to the strategic priorities of Samsung Electronics' core operating divisions, and encompasses investments in semiconductors, displays, telecommunications, and consumer electronics. Samsung Ventures America is currently actively investing in leading technology companies from a $350 million fund.
About INSIDE Contactless
INSIDE’s innovative, contactless and NFC semiconductor solutions are transforming how the world conducts transactions and information exchange. The company is the world leader in advanced contactless microprocessor platforms with 55 patents and more than 100 million products delivered worldwide. INSIDE enables bank card issuers, retailers, device manufacturers, service providers, and card brand organizations to deliver innovative consumer products and services with a high “cool factor” and outstanding user experience. INSIDE is headquartered in Aix-en-Provence, France, with offices in Shanghai, Singapore, Warsaw, Seoul, San Francisco, and Boston. For more information, please visit www.INSIDEcontactless.com.