NEC announced an investment in Tascent a US-based biometric system company, with the aim of accelerating the global expansion of its safety business. The amount of the investment is not disclosed.
Recently, the demand for multimodal biometric identification to further bolster security is rapidly growing. Within this environment, the iris identification market is expected to experience significant growth.
NEC has been developing biometric identification technologies for more than 40 years, and systems using NEC's Bio-Idiom biometrics have been introduced through more than 700 systems in 70 countries and regions around the world.
Moreover, earlier this year, NEC's iris recognition was named the world's most accurate by the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology, which has also recently named NEC's face recognition and fingerprint recognition technologies as the most accurate.
Established in 2015, Tascent provides multimodal biometric identification systems, with particular emphasis on the iris modality.
The company's technologies include optical control technology to remotely capture an accurate, high-quality iris image at high speed and a user interface (UI) technology that smoothly guides users in support of capturing accurate biometric information.
Tascent's technologies are embedded in security systems widely used at airports, government agencies and enterprises around the world.
This investment and partnership will enable the two companies to jointly enhance the capacity of iris recognition, using Tascent's optical control and UI technologies and NEC's advanced biometric engines and create a next-generation iris authentication offering for the public safety market.
"In NEC's 'Mid-term Management Plan 2020', the company positions its safety business as an engine for global growth and focuses on the development of this business," said Masakazu Yamashina, executive vice president, NEC Corporation.
"Moving forward, NEC aims to expand its social solution business and further boost profitability by acquiring new customers, delivery resources, core technologies and business models through collaborations and M-A while developing its own core technologies and solutions."
"Tascent is excited to partner with NEC to develop world-class identity solutions and to accelerate the adoption of multimodal biometrics in government and commercial applications. The unique combination of NEC and Tascent technologies has great potential to address today's identity challenges, making life easier and safer for people around the world," said Alastair Partington, Founder and Co-CEO of Tascent.