Remember the holograms of Senator Palpatine and Princess Leia in Star Wars!
Hugues Souparis created Surys in 1984 with a vision: Jules Verne’s dream of holography will become the safest science to authenticate and secure money, ID documents, vehicles, products, brands… in sum, all the material traces of our identity and exchanges. Hologram Industries was born. In 2015, the company changed its name to Surys.
Building trust through science, what better vocation?
And how close to the investor’s vocation of creating trust through capital?
In 2013, the company had already grown through acquisitions in Holland, Germany and the USA. It lacked access to the Chinese market though. That is why Cathay invested 15 million at the request of Surys’ founder, thus becoming a minority shareholder of this leader in optical and digital solutions. Thanks to its technological lead, Surys won the contract to secure Chinese passports, a feat in a very disputed and sensitive market due to the national sovereignty dimension. Holography is simultaneously opening new strategic segments around brand authentication and product traceability, bringing key new assets to bear in the fight against global counterfeiting.
In 2017 sales reached 280 million euros with an EBITDA of 40 million euros.
At the end of 2019, IN Group (formerly Imprimerie Nationale), a global specialist in identification and secure digital services, announced the acquisition of Surys. The pioneer acquired by its own customer.
Cathay exits the company with an IRR of 14.3%. 40 years after its creation in Bussy-Saint-Georges in Seine-et-Marne, Surys secures 1 out of 2 passports worldwide, it authenticates identity cards in Peru, Angola or Qatar, secures banknotes in the Philippines, Lebanon, Thailand or Brazil, protects vehicle registrations in Poland, Honduras, Ivory Coast or the USA, it manages the world’s largest identity document database and shares its scientific and technological leadership in 130 countries.
Cathay is at the heart of the world’s top 3 economies: by opening up our Chinese ecosystem to Sury’s founder, engineers and developers, we have helped to strengthen the commercial leadership of a French champion in the high value-added technology industry.
Cathay’s and entrepreneurs’ minds meet in believing in the power of their ideas: when Hugues Souparis asked us to join him as minority shareholders in Hologram Industries in 2013, he knew what his company’s technological leadership would bring to the Chinese market.
Cathay is at the crossroads of global trends transforming markets: the ideas that change the world are not made in China, made in France or made in the USA, they are made in Brains. We are here to connect them to each other and to the markets, through the capital we invest and through our cross-border culture and ecosystem spanning 4 continents.