Bad news for traditional providers of security devices: Their business might come under increasing pressure in the months and years ahead. Indirectly this is caused by Bellevue, Washington-based Alitheon, a U.S. developer of artificial intelligence systems. Their trailblazing new reconnaissance systems enable the fast identification of product tampering, counterfeiting and security threats. This might be a game changer in securing air freight as well as products of other businesses.
The U.S. company has successfully raised US$14.9 million in venture capital financing to further develop and market their FeaturePrint technology. Their innovative product is based on the rather simple finding that every single item, even those that appear to be exactly identical for the human eye, have unique surface characteristics.
Ultra-rapid identification of objects
Alitheon takes advantage of this fact by using off-the-shelf cameras and proprietary software to identify and convert those specific and unique characteristics into a digital model of the object called a FeaturePrint. This allows the authentication of different objects, aircraft components, seemingly identical e-commerce packages and other finished products which then can easily be tracked and traced across regional or international supply chains and distribution channels.
“A FeaturePrint registration or authentication can be performed in milliseconds at industrial production speeds without human involvement using off-the-shelf hardware integrated at any step throughout manufacturing and distribution," explains Scot Land, Alitheon's CEO and Co-Founder. "Our mission is straightforward: to create enduring trust among manufacturers, suppliers, distributors and customers." And make the world of transportation safer, should be added.
More innovations to come
The U.S. firm claims possessing 34 issued patents with many more pending, ensuring the further finetuning of their product line and the introduction of technical innovations. Their management team has a track record of developing and building new products. Seen by the fact that the company’s founders helped create the first machine vision-based explosives detection systems and have also developed fraud detection systems, satellite image analysis software and other mission-critical automated systems for governments, corporations and non-profits worldwide, the company emphasized during the Las Vegas-held CES consumer trade show last week.
Alitheon is funded by heavyweights
Participants in the above-mentioned venture capital financing round are well-known names: BMW i Ventures, IPD Capital and Shasta Ventures alongside current and former senior management from Boeing, Accenture and Fidelity.
Why BMW i Ventures stepped in providing early-stage risk capital illustrates Marcus Behrendt, Partner, BMW i Ventures: "Alitheon's ability to identify an item using only the object itself - independent of markings, tags or other modifications - is groundbreaking." The financial expert went on to say: "FeaturePrint technology has the potential to bring a new level of trust to supply chains that does not currently exist." A statement, explaining his company’s trust and commitment.
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