3M to Acquire Cogent Systems for Biometric Security

3M wants to buy biometrics vendor Cogent Systems for approximately $943 million.

3M has agreed to acquire security biometrics vendor Cogent Systems for roughly $943 million.

Cogent provides finger, palm, face and iris biometric systems for governments, law enforcement agencies and businesses. Under the agreement, a subsidiary of 3M will offer to purchase all outstanding shares of Cogent Systems within 10 business days.

According to 3M, thebiometrics market is projected to grow at a rate of more than 20 percent per year. Cogent's automated fingerprint/palm print identification systems enable customers to capture fingerprint and palm print images electronically, encode prints into searchable files, and compare fingerprints and palm prints to a database containing millions in seconds.

"Cogent Systems has done a tremendous job establishing a strong presence in the biometric industry," said Mike Delkoski, vice president and general manager of the 3M Security Systems Division, in a statement. "Adding Cogent Systems' products to our business strengthens our product portfolio and services in high security credential issuance and authentication systems and positions 3M's business in law enforcement applications. It also expands our reach into access control and other commercial ID and authentication applications."

3M's authentication portfolio includes border management products; document manufacturing and issuance systems for IDs, passports and visas; document readers and verification products; and security materials such as laminates to combat counterfeiting and tampering.

Based in Pasadena, Calif., Cogent employs approximately 500 people. The company will be part of 3M's Security Systems Division.

"3M can accelerate our growth and extend our reach in global border control markets, law enforcement and commercial applications," said Ming Hsieh, CEO of Cogent, in a statement. "Together, we'll deliver a broader range of identification and authentication solutions to the security industry and to our customers."