A4Vision Inc, a provider of advanced identification software and 3D facial imaging products and technology, today announced it has closed a second round of its Series B preferred stock with strategic funding of $4.8 million from Larry Ellison's investment vehicle, TAKO Ventures; FusionTech, a subsidiary of Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd (ST Engineering); NTT Leasing Co., Ltd; and Stanford University. The two Series B rounds have added $17.6 million in new funds, bringing total investment in A4Vision to $23.3 million.
Series B round strategic investors are funding expanded development of 3D facial biometrics for physical and logical access control and conversion of 2D images to more comprehensive and secure 3D images for database applications in passport and border control and national identity programs. Both a strategic and original investor in A4Vision, Logitech invested in the first round of Series B, which was announced previously with venture capital funding on Sept. 20, 2004.
"A4Vision's commitment from the outset has been to deliver the best 3D biometric technology in applications that benefit commercial, civil and government sectors," said A4Vision CEO Grant Evans. "As security demands broaden in every sector, existing methods of identification are stretched in attempts to address all scenarios. 3D literally brings a new dimension to biometric science. In particular, A4Vision's 3D technology has the ability to accommodate full motion, perform both verification and identification, operate in all light conditions at speeds up to 10 identifications per second, and provide completely passive, non-invasive mode of identification -- all critical to facial identification solutions envisioned by our strategic funding partners. We are gratified that these investors recognize A4Vision's incomparable technology and are forging the way with us to create the future of 3D optical biometric identification."
TAKO Ventures is an investment vehicle of Oracle CEO Larry Ellison. Representing TAKO, Steve Fink joins A4Vision's board of directors.
FusionTech, a subsidiary of ST Engineering, serves as its investment vehicle for emerging technologies. FusionTech, through its associate companies providing intelligent building and homeland security solutions and system integration, is engaged with A4Vision in an OEM relationship to develop and deploy A4Vision's 3D physical access products in Southeast Asia. "We are on the lookout for non-intrusive identification systems, the kind that A4Vision is known for. We were also very impressed with the A4 team from their technology to business approach," said Fong Saik Hay, Chief Technology Officer, ST Engineering.
Biometrics Analyst Prianka Chopra of Frost & Sullivan, said, "A4Vision has 3D face recognition technology that provides improved accuracy and reliability by accommodating both light and motion in registration and identification processes. We recognize A4Vision's opportunity amidst an imminent global adoption of biometrics and anxiously await the forthcoming developments promised by the strategic partnerships announced today." Frost & Sullivan expects the total biometrics industry to grow to over $4 billion in 2009.
A4Vision has been shipping 3D biometric products for access control, secure authentication and verification and database enrollment, since October 2003.