Warsaw, Poland, August 14th 2008, Hitachi Europe Ltd. and ELKART Systemy Kart Elektronicznych Sp. z o.o. in Poland have signed a partnership agreement to develop new IT security-related business in the banking and government sectors in the Polish IT market. The agreement covers Hitachi’s smart card solutions based on the Secure MULTOS platform for banking and public administration related applications, as well as Hitachi’s award winning Finger Vein Authentication System.

Tadeusz Woszczynski, Business Developer in Hitachi Europe for IT solutions in Poland said: “ELKART is one of the major and most professional smart card solutions and services providers in the Polish market. It has strong capability for the introduction of innovative card solutions into the Polish banking and administration sector.”

Hitachi Europe is looking to expand the delivery of its innovative IT security technologies and solutions into the Central and Eastern European marketplace and Poland is seen as one of the key countries in this region.

Peter Jones, Business Manager in Hitachi Europe’s Information Systems Group explained: “Hitachi Europe is very happy to have signed this agreement with ELKART as Hitachi Solution Partner for the introduction of new smart card solutions based on MULTOS platform and related biometrics systems in Poland. Hitachi Europe was looking for professional partners for card solutions in CEE region and ELKART is a company that fully meets our expectations.”

Hitachi Europe Ltd’s IFG is responsible for the promotion and sales of a range of Hitachi IT technologies focused towards IT infrastructure and IT security applications. This includes blade servers, systems management software, biometrics, secure smart card solutions and radio frequency tagging solutions (RFID).

For secure payment transactions, IFG offers a packaged solution for chip cards based on the open platform MULTOS secure smart card operating system. This offer includes chip modules, keys, application certificates, personalization tools and card application licensing for the major EMV VISA and MasterCard chip card products.

Biometric solutions are based on Hitachi’s award winning Finger Vein Authentication system. This practical and effective technology has several advantages over existing systems. It is secure, resilient to copying (since the veins are beneath the skin), is highly accurate and fast. It is approved in Europe by Government organizations as a “privacy compliant technology”. It is now being implemented by major financial institutions in Japan for authentication of banking transactions. IFG offers solutions for physical access control, logical access control and embedded applications.

Jerzy Cichowicz, President of the ELKART Management Board, said:

This agreement was signed out of limelight as both parties were primarily focused on its contents.Although signing the agreement may pass unnoticed, its business results will be clearly visible.”

Adam Kokoszkiewicz, Sales and Marketing Manager at ELKART commented:

“The deal extends product portfolio of Elkart and Hitachi. This will enable both companies to expand into new markets. Our customers need modern, combined solutions, which we will now provide”.

The Company Elkart Systemy Kart Elektronicznych Sp. z o.o. is the leader in Poland for the outsourcing of Card Personalization and printing that for applications in the banking and financial sector. The Company is certified with international payments organizations - VISA Intl. and MasterCard Intl. – and conforms to the high standards required for the provision of a secure environment for processing data for payment transactions. The Quality and Information Security Management System implemented by the Company was certified for its compliance with the ISO9001 and the ISO27001 standards in 2007. The Company resources in the realm of security as well as co-operation with its business partners allows for the offer of comprehensive and cost effective solutions for Internet transaction authentication such as Two Factor Authentication, i.e. implementation based on chip cards and secure, network independent card readers.

As a plastic cards provider Elkart is a member of the ICMA – international association of card manufacturers and companies rendering versatile related services. The Company is also active within the Polish Bank Association participating in projects of the Bank Technology Forum and the Biometrics Workgroup.

Apart form technologies focused on the banking sector, Elkart has implemented and successfully offers the personalization service for electronic ID cards for students.

Secure environment, advanced, state-of-art technological and organisational solutions allow the Company to offer sophisticated products and services based on versatile types of electronic cards.