In The Boardroom Press Room About Us Research Reports Contact Us

In The Boardroom With...

Dr. Christian Fischer
Chairman of the Management Board
Chief Executive Officer
SMARTRAC N.V. Thank you for joining us today. Please give us an overview of your background and a brief company history.

Dr. Christian Fischer: I serve as the Chairman of the Management Board and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of SMARTRAC N.V. since July 2007. Prior to this, I held the position of the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) since 2006.
SMARTRAC was founded in 2000, went public in July 2006, and trades as a stock corporation under Dutch law with its registered headquarters in Amsterdam. We read with great interest regarding SMARTRAC products that, “SMARTRAC offers a broad range of RFID transponders for various fields of application in all current frequency standards.“ Please give us an overview of SMARTRAC solutions including eID Inlays and Card Inlays. Are there any new products on the horizon?

Dr. Christian Fischer: We have some 50 ready-made products in our standard product portfolio and supply various customized solutions. We also have a proven track record that amounts to more than 1.5 billion RFID transponders.
As a technology leader in the RFID industry, we are continuously broadening our product and technology portfolio. Among our newest products is the SMART-AC, a product which supports the transition from pure paper-based documents to electronic identification documents. The PC card inlay is equipped with an “anti-crack feature” thereby combining mechanical robustness with the benefits of polycarbonate-based contactless smartcards. All of our new products have been well received on the market.

In addition, we have developed a high temperature label, a tire label and a high security label for application fields such as asset tracking and toll collection. What are your key target markets and what is your perspective on the market drivers for SMARTRAC solutions at this challenging economic time?

Dr. Christian Fischer: Since January 1, 2009, we have structured our business into the four business units eID, Cards, Industry & Logistics, and Tickets & Labels. This business unit structure is an efficient organizational approach that ensures optimized utilization of resources, ideal market cultivation and customer support for each of the respective market segments and their specific needs.

The Business Unit eID covers high-security RFID products for electronic identity documents issued by governments and state authorities such as e-passports, e-national ID cards, electronic driver's licenses, electronic visa documents, contactless healthcare cards, electronic social security cards, and electronic permanent resident cards.

The Business Unit Cards includes card inlays for public transport, access control, e-payment, and active card applications and caters to card manufacturers as well as multinational system integrators with their own card manufacturing capabilities.

The Business Unit Industry & Logistics produces and supplies RFID tags for a variety of automotive, animal identification, logistics, industry, laundry, medical, and entry ID applications.

The Business Unit Tickets & Labels manufactures and supplies RFID inlays for ticket and label converters including fields of application such as media management for libraries, ticketing for public transportation, apparel tracking, airline luggage, pharmaceuticals, vehicle identification, and toll applications.

With regard to the economic environment, we are convinced that we have the right product and technology portfolio, the best team in the industry, and that we can rely on very experienced and successful business partners. Based on our own strengths and the excellent relationship with our customers, we are very well positioned for future success even in a challenging economic environment. Congratulations on the achievement of SMARTRAC surpassing the production milestone of 200 million library labels. This is quite impressive. What is your perspective on this market? Are there 1 or 2 other success stories or "wins" you would like to talk about?

Dr. Christian Fischer: The library and media management market has shown strong growth in the last years. We are very pleased that we have been able to gain and maintain a market leading position in this segment. The products which we supply to this market are manufactured in our facility in Malaysia and are based on a technology platform that integrates the inlay assembly concept, proprietary interconnection methods, and the in-house manufacturing of antennas, straps, and inlays. This is a unique approach.

We are the global market leader in high-quality RFID inlays for e-Passports and contactless credit cards and we hold a market leading position as manufacturer and supplier for RFID transponders for public transportation applications. With regard to specific projects, it is up to our customers to be given credit for the successful implementation. We understand that SMARTRAC is a major participant at CARTES . As you plan for this event, what are the industry themes and trends that SMARTRAC will be addressing at this leading trade show?

Dr. Christian Fischer: As already mentioned, we invented SMART-AC which is of high interest for business partners in the e-ID market. In addition, near field communication (NFC) was the dominating term for the past months. We have been looking into the potential of NFC for a while and have been ready to supply a complete collection of NFC products including inlays for labels, tickets, and cards as well as complete tags for quite some time. With substantial demand for NFC-enabled transponders expected for 2012, we strengthen our focus on supporting customers in tapping the potential of NFC technology. We will of course also be pleased to introduce our NFC product offering with business partners and interested parties at Cartes 2011. Thank you again for joining us today.

Dr. Christian Fischer : Thank you for your interest.