Apple acquires fingerprint scanner firm AuthenTec

Dan Moren
29 July, 2012
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Apple has snapped up AuthenTec, a US-based company that specialises in security systems such as fingerprint scanners. Under the deal, which was made public by a SEC filing on Thursday, AuthenTec will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Apple, at a price of US$8 per share. The agreement is, of course, pending regulatory approval.

The merger document covers a couple specific areas of interest. Firstly, intellectual property: The two companies have entered into an agreement on IP that gives Apple the right to acquire “non-exclusive licenses and other rights” on AuthenTec hardware, software, and patents. For that, Apple will hands over US$20 million, after which it has 270 days to license certain technologies for up to US$115 million.

Second, and perhaps more interestingly, is a development agreement, which states that AuthenTec “will perform certain non-recurring engineering services for [Apple] for product development and will receive payment of a total of up to US$7.5 million for performance of the development work.” Any intellectual property that comes out of that work will be owned by Apple. However, AuthenTec will act as an independent contractor for the development agreement.


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