Welcome to RFID 24-7

Omni-ID pulls in $15M in VC funding;
Targets new markets, Asian growth

2/9/09 | John R. Johnson | email

Money continues to flow into the RFID sector, with Omni-ID the latest recipient. The Foster City, Calif.-based firm announced its third round of funding today, securing $15 million from UK-based Cody Gate Ventures G.P. The funding marks Cody's third investment in Omni-ID, and is triple the approximately $5 million it doled out in its first two rounds of funding.

"There have been ups and downs and sideway moves in the industry but we see a tremendous opportunity for Omni-ID and RFID..."
Tom Pavela, Omni-ID

Omni-ID, which provides passive ultra high frequency (UHF) RFID technology solutions, expects to use the funding to ramp up marketing efforts, penetrate new markets, increase manufacturing capacity and to move into Asian markets. The company expects to unveil a new global customer in the Asian marketplace sometime next month. To date, Omni-ID has successfully built a reputation as a UHF IT asset tagging manufacturer.

"Given the state of the economy and current period of slowed investment in RFID, the Omni-ID Series C funding announcement and its sizeable amount are very significant milestones for the company and the RFID market," Michael Liard, RFID practice director at ABI Research, said in a release.

Tom Pavela, president and CEO at Omni-ID, says that discussions about additional funding began last May, well before the financial meltdown that surfaced in the fall.

"This is a pretty significant investment and I think it shows the confidence that they have in the company, in the vision we have and in our technology," says Pavela. "We had a good portfolio and good results to show them, as well as a good product road map and vision of what we would like to do. It's always challenging to raise money and it's even more challenging in these difficult times. I'm very pleased because I know for early stage companies it's a very difficult time."

The funding follows a strong year of growth for Omni-ID, which last year expanded its executive team, added to its existing product line with the launch of Omni-ID Prox™ and Omni-ID On Demand™, as well as the Omni-ID Service Bureau. Pavela says that the company is focused on enabling new applications of RFID technology and has seen many large deployments of its products, especially in tracking high-value IT assets and data center applications. Its IT asset tracking solutions are being used by IBM at multiple data centers in both Europe and in the U.S. Its business with IBM is expected to expand further this year.

Because Omni-ID's tags function on and off-metal, they are uniquely capable of meeting the challenges presented in a datacenter environment where metal is highly prevalent.

Pavela says that the company will also use its new funding to increase exposure in the retail sector and the industrial marketplace. Omni-ID solutions have been used to track industrial diesel engines, for example, and the company is also involved in retail inventory management through pallet tracking solutions. Pavela says the company will develop new products to further penetrate both of those industries in 2009.

"There have been ups and downs and sideway moves in the industry but we see a tremendous opportunity for Omni-ID and RFID," says Pavela. "Even in these tough times we feel if you have a strong value proposition that addresses a real need and delivers real value to customers, you can still grow. We're not being [hasty] about how we grow but we are not battening the hatches down like some other companies. We see real opportunity for our solutions and we plan to grow during these tough times. We're very fortunate to have these funds that will allow us to do that."

click to jump to top

For more information:

RFID 24-7 ©2008 · all rights reserved · sign up for our email newsletter

website by Fat Cat Design · last updated Mon Aug 29 2011