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RFID News Roundup

Thinfilm announces new U.S. high-volume fabrication facility ••• Custom BioGenic Systems intros VersAlert wireless temperature-monitoring system ••• Virtual beacon company Mist closes on $28 million funding round ••• GAO RFID unveils enhanced hands-free advanced parking solution ••• NFC Forum announces new technical specifications ••• AIM publishes standard for evaluating RFID's effects on medical devices.
By Beth Bacheldor
Oct 13, 2016

The following are news announcements made during the past week by the following organizations: Thin Film Electronics; Custom BioGenic Systems; Mist; GAO RFID; the NFC Forum; and AIM.

Thinfilm Announces New U.S. High-Volume Fabrication Facility

Thin Film Electronics (Thinfilm), a provider of printed electronics and Near Field Communication (NFC) smart packaging solutions, has announced the acquisition of a fabrication facility in Silicon Valley to house a new high-volume, roll-to-roll manufacturing line. Thinfilm says it expects the new roll-based production process to increase its front-end production capacity to five billion NFC OpenSense and NFC SpeedTap tags per year, yielding up to $680 million in annual revenue.

The site, formerly occupied by a Qualcomm division, will support ultra-scale production of Thinfilm's NFC products and serve as the company's new U.S. headquarters, with the relocation planned for the first quarter of 2017. In the near term, the facility upgrade enables Thinfilm to scale existing sheet-based manufacturing of its NFC, electronic article surveillance (EAS) and sensor label products. Thinfilm says it expects operations to move into the new facility in March 2017, with roll-to-roll production expected to be operational for EAS by the end of next year, and for transistor-based products in 2018.

"Given the growing market demand for NFC smart packaging, it was vital that we secure a facility that enables us to ramp capacity to ultra-high volumes through roll-to-roll production," said Davor Sutija, Thinfilm's CEO, in a prepared statement. "Thinfilm's NFC smart labels allow brands to address authentication and anti-tampering needs while empowering them to engage with consumers through the simple tap of an Android smartphone. As the digital marketing arena becomes more fragmented, brands see NFC as a way to eliminate intermediaries and connect directly with their customers."

Located in San Jose, California, the building was formerly used by Qualcomm MEMS Technologies for operational-display production until the last spring. More than $80 million had been invested previously in the 93,000-square-foot facility, which sits on 5.4 acres of land and features a 22,000-square-foot cleanroom (Class 10 to Class 10,000).

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