SMARTRAC and UPM join forces

SMARTRAC N.V., a leading developer, manufacturer, and supplier of RFID transponders, announced that the company has reached an agreement with UPM-Kymmene Corporation (UPM) today by which SMARTRAC N.V. (SMARTRAC) will take over UPM’s RFID business while UPM-Kymmene Corporation will become an indirect stockholder of SMARTRAC. The transaction is still subject to certain customary conditions, including regulatory approvals.

As consideration for UPM’s RFID business, UPM will obtain an indirect economic interest in SMARTRAC of 10.6% via OEP Technologie B.V.. OEP Technologie B.V. is an acquisition company controlled by One Equity Partners (OEP). OEP Technologie B.V. holds approximately 87 percent of the issued capital and voting rights in SMARTRAC.

OEP Technologie B.V. and Manfred Rietzler, one of the co-founders of SMARTRAC who holds about 9.61 percent of the issued capital and voting rights in SMARTRAC N.V., are persons acting in concert due to a pooling agreement between OEP and Manfred Rietzler.

“We are very pleased that we were able to win UPM-Kymmene Corporation as industrial investor of SMARTRAC N.V.”, said Dr. Christian Fischer, CEO of SMARTRAC. “We are convinced that the world-class experience, innovative spirit, and leadership of UPM-Kymmene Corporation will highly benefit our company”.

UPM RFID is part of UPM-Kymmene Corporation’s Engineered Materials business group and consists of three companies located in Finland, the United States and China. UPM RFID is a leading supplier of passive RFID products specializing in the development and high-volume production of HF, NFC, and UHF RFID tags and inlays for use in a broad range of RFID applications.

“UPM has been developing and investing in its RFID inlay business for a number of years. The business unit has evolved from a small venture to a sizeable business and now recognized as the market leader in its field. However, the business has no longer little relation with UPM’s other businesses. In addition, combining the business unit with a company with the industry’s widest RFID business portfolio, we give it new leverage to continue to develop successfully. Since we continue to believe in the future development of the RFID business, we are very pleased to get the opportunity to become an indirect shareholder in SMARTRAC, the undisputed leader in the RFID business”, says Jussi Vanhanen, President, Engineered Materials, UPM.

“Becoming part of the leading player in the RFID industry opens up totally new possibilities for us. I am convinced that this new setup will be a strong player in the growing RFID market place, ready to offer support and solutions to customers around the world,” says Marcus Vaenerberg, Senior Vice President, UPM RFID.

SMARTRAC develops, manufactures, and supplies NFC and UHF RFID tags and inlays at its production facility in Kulim, Malaysia. The company has continuously expanded its production capacity at the site in Malaysia over the past three years to satisfy the strong growing demand for UHF RFID tags and inlays in the retail apparel and smart media management markets as well as in further attractive RFID application fields.

“UPM RFID is a true pioneer in the global RFID tags and inlay business. We are delighted to add such an experienced and capable crew to our global team. The transaction will provide us with a strong product offering for NFC and UHF RFID tags and inlays and will furnish us with favorable additional manufacturing capacities in strategically important markets”, said Dr. Christian Fischer, CEO of SMARTRAC. “The combination of SMARTRAC and UPM RFID will significantly accelerate our momentum as a developer and supplier of passive RFID tags and inlays for all relevant application fields of today and tomorrow.”



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