Paris (France) - June 28, 2007 - AIRTAG®, the first European company to turn contactless & NFC into a marketing, loyalty and advertising tool, today announced the closing of a €2 million funding round with leading European venture capital investor Seventure Partners (funds Banque Populaire Innovation 10 et Crédit Agricole Asset Management Innovation 6). The transaction is the first funding round of the company.
"We are very pleased to benefit from the support of such an experienced investor with deep expertise in the telecom and retail industries," said Jérémie Leroyer, president and CEO of AIRTAG. "We will leverage this new funding to support the rollout of our contactless ‘smart objects’ loyalty and payment offer and speed up the development of our next generation Near Field Communication (NFC) platform".
“We were particularly impressed with AIRTAG’s seasoned management team. The company has consistently demonstrated its ability to leverage its investments wisely, win strategic accounts and move an R&D-intensive business forward. We strongly believe that NFC is the next big opportunity that will happen in the mobile field, AIRTAG’s roadmap and its focus on customer satisfaction will make it a success”, said Fréderic-François Lebrun, Partner, Seventure Partners.
With AIRTAG, consumers can use a contactless “smart object” (customized card or keyfob, transport pass) for a new personalized shopping experience: loyalty programs become smarter, payment easier and secured and promotions focused and contextual. For example, AIRTAG launched in 2007 the GSPOT program for Gedenim a multi-brand lifestyle & clothing retail network, targeting 15-25 year-old customers of its 15 stores in the Paris region.
Moreover, this funding transaction provides AIRTAG with the resources to further develop and complete its secured service platform for MNOs, which will include the following features:
European MNOs will start launching commercial offers by early 2008 and AIRTAG positions itself as a Trusted Service Manager specializing in retail services with a twofold objective:
AIRTAG’s solutions for MNOs have been highlighted at the 3GSM Congress where AIRTAG demonstrated a NFC loyalty, payment & ticketing application.
AIRTAG’s customers include mobile operators, fast-food companies, retailers, financial services companies and other service providers.
Founded in 2006 by two co-founders of Haïku / Index Europe, AIRTAG is the first European start-up company fully dedicated to NFC technology applications.
AIRTAG provides contactless / NFC solutions to retailers and mobile carriers: embedded application (JavaCard), Application Platform (Applications lifecyle management) and NFC middleware Gateway for third parties.
AIRTAG is hosted and supported in its R&D by Telecom Paris Entrepreneurs a Paris based start-up incubator.www.airtag.com
Active Partner of companies with high growth potential, Seventure invests since 1997 in innovative technology businesses. Seventure Partners invest in young French and European ventures acting in NTIC, Telco and Life Science field. With € 400,000,000 under management, Seventure Partners is one of the largest European Venture Capital investor. Seventure Partners is a branch of Natixis Private Equity, one of the Private Equity leaders in Europe.
Frédéric le Brun, Partner
Jonathan Cohen-Sabban, Analyst
Phone: 33 1 58 19 22 76
Placement agent: Optiva Capital.