Smart Eye and iMotions are poised to deliver the latest major M&A event in the biometrics industry, announcing a new deal in which the former will acquire the latter for SEK 400 million, or roughly $46.6 million.
iMotions elevated its profile earlier this year with its launch of a remote version of its data collection platform. A response to the impact of COVID-19, the Online Data Collection module was designed to let researchers take advantage of the capabilities of iMotions’ Desktop Solution while working remotely, enabling them to track eye movements, facial expressions, and other biometrics.
Smart Eye, meanwhile, is known for its Human Insight AI platform, which uses computer vision to look for insights into subjects’ psychological states. The solution supports applications such as facial recognition and driver monitoring, and points to some clear synergies with iMotions’ offering.
“The next decade is going to see an amazing expansion of human behavioral research using multi-modal approaches,” explained Smart Eye founder and CEO Martin Krantz. “The addition of iMotions and its multi-sensor integration software promises to unlock increased value for Smart Eye’s current customers, particularly in the automotive industry, while opening the door to others.”
The acquisition will see iMotions continue its operations as a wholly owned Smart Eye subsidiary, with CEO Peter Hartzbech remaining in charge. Commenting on the deal, Hartzbech called Smart Eye “the ideal partner to further invest in the vision to accelerate human behavior insights, driving transformation that will fuel our customers’ successes across commercial industries, as well as for academic researchers.”
For Smart Eye, which currently has offices in Sweden, Tokyo, China, Germany, and Detroit, the acquisition will significantly expand its market reach. iMotions has a roster of 1,300 customers spanning various industries and academia, and has its own offices in Denmark, Germany, and Singapore.
The deal will also enable Smart Eye to consolidate its position in a broader computer vision market that could reach a value of $41.11 billion by the end of the decade, according to a recent report from Allied Market Research. Smart Eye acquired Affectiva, another ’emotion AI’ rival, earlier this year.
October 28, 2021 – by Alex Perala