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RFID News Roundup

Korean steel maker tracks operations with RFID, saving $1.4 million monthly; Xerafy announces new series of passive UHF RFID on-metal tags; Smart Track Logistics launches Integrated Asset Tracker; Identec Group says growth strategy a success; Ruro intros RFID program for life-sciences industry; Taiwan External Trade Development readies 37th Taipei International Electronics Show.
Identec Group Says Growth Strategy a Success
Identec Group, a global RFID solutions provider that operates a number of RFID businesses, has announced that its strategy of creating synergies and investing in the growth of its four U.S. businesses—Hothead Technologies, Beverage Metrics, InSync Software and Identec Solutions—is rapidly showing significant results. In April of this year, the company, formerly known as RFID Invest, changed its name to Identec Group, unveiling a new business strategy that combined nine businesses to provide full RFID solutions within a variety of markets, including hospitality and oil and gas (see Identec Group Adopts New Growth Strategy to Go With Its New Name). The restructuring created what the company claims is the largest RFID solutions provider in the world, with more than 2.000 customers in 16 industries on all continents. The restructuring was designed to capitalize on the core competencies of its U.S. businesses, and to promote synergies in technology, marketing, operational and financial activities. In particular, Identec Group reports, Hothead Technologies and Beverage Metrics have recently signed major pilot projects with a series of Fortune 500 companies. Hothead Technologies, its ownership of which the firm recently increased from 5 percent to 100 percent, is developing wireless solutions to aid in the detection and prevention of heat-related events and illnesses, and is also making advances in sports and industry, as well as among fire and rescue organizations (see Georgia High School Football Teams Put RFID Into Play). Beverage Metrics developed and markets a beverage-management solution for the hospitality industry, tracking the amount of beverages poured in real time, as well as back-room bottle inventory (see Beverage Metrics Serves Up Drink-Management Solution). InSync Software developed the software platform for both companies, while Identec Solutions developed the sensors for both Hothead Technologies and Beverage Metrics. Among other RFID solutions developed by Identec Group are systems for tracking containers, trucks and heavy equipment in ports. These solutions are currently assisting the U.S. Department of Defense with the secure and safe transport of high-value cargo, the managing of material assets in the building of power plants and large industrial projects, and the real-time tracking of fresh foods from field to fork. In May 2011, Identec Group announced that it had completed a $7.5 million equity capital round with private investors—which, the firm indicated, would be used to fuel further expansion in the multibillion-dollar U.S. RFID solutions market, and to fund its member companies' organic growth (see RFID News Roundup: Identec Group Raises $7.5 Million in Round of Private Financing).

Ruro Intros RFID Program for Life-Sciences Industry
Ruro, a provider of research productivity and management solutions, headquartered in Frederick, Md., has introduced a new RFID solution aimed at helping life-sciences companies to more easily implement RFID technologies so that they can leverage the benefits of automated tracking for greater accuracy, safety, security and productivity in their research, development and supply chain operations. The solution includes RFID readers, label printers and antennas; compatible RFID media, such as labels, tags and badges; Ruro's RFID-enabled management software or application programming interfaces (APIs), so organizations can leverage their own management systems; and services to help organizations plan, implement, roll out and support RFID-enabled solutions. The solution has a variety of product offerings from which to choose, including RFID readers from Impinj (the R220, R420 and xPortal), and the UHF1B from DLP Design for single tag-reading applications; RFID antennas from Convergence Systems Limited (the CS790 ultra-thin antenna and the CS777 Brickyard Near Field antenna), Impinj (the MatchBox) and Laird Technologies (the Cushcraft S9025 and S9028); RFID printer-encoders from Zebra Technologies (the RZ400) and Sato America (the GL408e/412e); handheld RFID interrogators from Intermec (the IP30) and ATID (models AT50 and AT870); RFID chips from Impinj (the Monza 3, 4 and 5), Alien Technology (the Higgs 3 and 4) and NXP Semiconductors (the Ucode); various inlays from UPM RFID, Alien and Ubique (the Ut-a RFID UHF antenna/inlay/tag); integrated RFID labels from Partnered Print Solutions; various RFID tags from Confidex, Intermec, Zebra Technologies, Mikoh, Murata, NCR, Omni-ID and several others; and RFID badge cards and badge printers from Zebra (the P430i and P330i).

Taiwan External Trade Development Readies 37th Taipei International Electronics Show
The Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), a non-profit trade-promotion organization, has announced the launch of TAITRONICS 2011, the 37th Taipei International Electronics Show. The conference and tradeshow is scheduled for Oct. 10-13, 2011, at the Taipei World Trade Center (TWTC) Nangang Exhibition Hall, in Taipei, and will bring together industry leaders, end users and technologists who are using, building and leveraging the latest technologies. Last year's event attracted 813 exhibitors, the organization reports, as well as 40,016 attendees from around the world. This year's conference is co-located with Broadband Taiwan and Taiwan RFID, and is focused on electronic components, batteries and power supplies, LED components and applications, meters and instruments, process and manufacturing, wires and cables, consumer electronics, safety and security, and RFID equipment and applications. According to TAITRA, Taiwan has a complete RFID industrial chain, with companies engaged in various aspects of the radio frequency identification business, such as chip, label and reader manufacturing, as well as RF technology, packaging, testing and system integration, making RFID one of the nation's emerging industries with global competitiveness. Visitors to TAITRONICS 2011, the organization reports, will see many of Taiwan's first-tier RFID manufacturers displaying a wide range of RFID products, including labels, tags, smart cards, readers, access–control systems, remote controls and software, as well as a variety of RFID applications and solutions. Founded in 1970 to help promote foreign trade, TAITRA—jointly sponsored by the Taiwanese government, industry associations and several commercial organizations—assists the country's manufacturers and other businesses with reinforcing their international competitiveness, as well as in coping with the challenges they face in foreign markets.

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