Synaptics' new acquisition could bring fingerprint readers to most laptops

If you hadn't heard, fingerprint readers are in vogue these days. Synaptics clearly knows it: the company just acquired Validity, a firm that specializes in finger-based authentication. The $92.5 million deal gives Synaptics both access to the biometric market as well as a complement to its existing touch input devices. While the company isn't detailing its plans, it's easy to see the potential impact. When Synaptics makes the majority of laptop trackpads, there's a real chance that fingerprint sign-ins on PCs could become commonplace.

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Synaptics Enters Fast Growing Fingerprint ID Market with Acquisition of Validity

Reinforces Market Leadership in Human Interface Technology with Industry-Leading Fingerprint Sensor Technology | Provides Preliminary First Quarter Fiscal 2014 Revenue Results | Will Host Conference Call Today at 2:30pm Pacific Time (5:30pm Eastern Time)

SAN JOSE, Calif. – October 9, 2013 Synaptics Inc. (NASDAQ: SYNA), a leader in human interface solutions, today announced it has signed a Definitive Agreement to acquire Validity Sensors, Inc., a leading provider of biometric fingerprint authentication solutions for smartphones, tablets and notebook PCs. With the acquisition of Validity, Synaptics expects to gain access to the fast growing biometrics market, significantly expanding its market opportunity and underscoring the company's commitment to making smart devices easier to use.

Biometrics and fingerprint sensing is poised for explosive growth as OEMs look to differentiate their products, and consumers demand greater security with seamless ease-of-use. Synaptics believes the acquisition of Validity positions the company at the forefront of this exponential growth opportunity and allows the company to strengthen its portfolio of touch-based technologies with the diversification into fingerprint-sensing capabilities.

"Biometrics has long been of interest to Synaptics as it complements our existing touch-based solutions and offers an exciting new way to interact with devices," said Rick Bergman, President and CEO, Synaptics. "We are thrilled to be adding the world class Validity team to the Synaptics family. This acquisition is a significant step forward for the company and serves as a proof point of our dedication for continued growth, innovation and commitment to providing the industry's best and broadest portfolio of human interface solutions."

"Synaptics' acquisition of Validity puts our vision of having Natural ID on every mobile computing device on the fast track," said Rob Baxter, CEO, Validity. "The opportunity for our people, our shareholders and our technology, along with Synaptics' commitment to owning the human interface, made this partnership a natural fit. The acquisition adds Validity's world-class biometrics engineering team to a Synaptics team known for in-depth, system level engineering expertise."

Validity is the leader in Natural ID™ authentication, providing fingerprint sensing solutions to the world's leading consumer device OEMs. Validity's best-in-class authentication secure, high-performance and cost-effective solutions include its LiveFlex® fingerprint sensor technology, providing superior image quality with high-frequency RF imaging into the live layer of the finger. Synaptics believes Natural ID solutions provide an ideal platform to address the explosive growth of biometric sensing in everything from mobile payment transactions, cloud-based services and enterprise mobile device security.

Agreement Terms

Synaptics will pay approximately $92.5 million in stock and cash at the closing plus potential performance payments over a multi-year period for total potential consideration of up to $255.0 million. The stock component is expected to be in the range of 1.5 million to 2.3 million shares. The acquisition is expected to close in the current quarter, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory reviews, as necessary. Additional details can be found in Synaptics' Current Report on form 8-K, filed October 9, 2013.