New mar­kets are just heart beat away for belfast busi­ness

Belfast Telegraph - Business Telegraph - - Front Page - BY STAFF RE­PORTER

MA­CHINES can iden­tify us by our irises and our fin­ger­prints — but a Belfast firm is bring­ing bio­met­rics into a new age with tech­nol­ogy iden­ti­fy­ing us by heart­beat.

And now tech com­pany B-se­cur is hop­ing to bring its know-how to new mar­kets af­ter win­ning in­vest­ment fund­ing of £3.5m from pri­vate in­vestors as well as the Bank of Ire­land Ker­nel Cap­i­tal Growth Funds. Po­ten­tial uses for its in­ven­tions could range from cars, to build­ings’ se­cu­rity and wear­ables tech­nol­ogy for health and fit­ness. The firm was set up in 2002 by Colin An­der­son, the founder of An­der­son Ad­ver­tis­ing — now ASG and one of North­ern Ire­land’s big­gest ad­ver­tis­ing and pub­lic re­la­tions agen­cies.

Mr An­der­son said: “The great­est chal­lenge in busi­ness is tak­ing the germ of an idea and bring­ing it to fruition.

“In 2002 we were way ahead of our time and it’s taken a while and sig­nif­i­cant per­sonal in­vest­ment to ger­mi­nate, but the idea is now ready to blos­som.”

B-se­cur is creating a port­fo­lio of heart­beat al­go­rithms which it is li­cens­ing for the use of clients in a num­ber of sec­tors.

A spokes­woman said: “The unique fea­tures of us­ing a heart­beat to au­then- ticate in­di­vid­u­als is that not only can you iden­tify the user, but you can also tell a num­ber of well-be­ing met­rics about the user, such as whether they are tired, stressed or even un­der the in­flu­ence of drunk or drugs.”

One pos­si­ble use is for se­cu­rity in build­ings and work­places.

She added: “This prod­uct also col­lects vi­tal in­for­ma­tion about the em­ployee such as heart rate, lo­ca­tion, and well-be­ing met­rics. This will en­sure the safety of these em­ploy­ees in dan­ger­ous and highly se­cu­rity-con­scious en­vi­ron­ments.”

ON­LINE car mar­ket­place Auto Trader is team­ing up with the Belfast Tele­graph to max­imise the mo­tor­ing au­di­ences en­joyed by both.

The con­sumer will now be able to use Auto Trader’s pow­er­ful search tool along­side the Belfast Tele­graph’s mo­tor­ing con­tent on­line and in print. Auto Trader has over 450,000 cars listed, in­clud­ing 13,000 in North­ern Ire­land.

Karolina Ed­wards-sma­jda, Auto Trader’s re­tailer and con­sumer prod­uct di­rec­tor, said: “By build­ing our part­ner­ship net­work, we are ex­tend­ing our cus­tomers’ reach even fur­ther, pro­vid­ing them with ex­clu­sive ac­cess to the UK’S largest mar­ket­place of en­gaged car buy­ers.” Mark Reilly, clas­si­fied ad­ver­tis­ing man­ager at Belfast Tele­graph, added: “We see a great syn­ergy be­tween the strength and depth of our own multi-me­dia mo­tor­ing au­di­ence and that of Auto Trader.”

From left: Mark Reilly, Kirstie Luke, Auto Trader’s area sales man­ager, and Auto Trader’s David Hawksworth

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