Can Iris Corp redeem itself?
Emmanuel Samarathisa | 23 Nov 2018 00:30
Iris Corporation Bhd is caught between a chequered past and an uncertain future in its move to stage a comeback in the domestic trusted identification (ID) market.
Since its inception in 1994, the company had all the makings of a homegrown champion: it created the global e-passport market and the Malaysian identification smart card MyKad. To date, Iris Corp has roughly 40 patents to its name.
But the company’s fortunes began to slip since 2010, especially after it lost the MyKad contract to Datasonic Group Bhd that year.
Then in January 2017, Iris Corp’s then deputy managing director Datuk Hamdan Mohd Hassan was arrested by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) for alleged graft involving an e-passport project in Guinea.
Hamdan was arrested after allegedly demanding bribes to supply and implement secure chip technology solutions in that country.
A few months later, Hamdan retired from the company. The case has since been closed after MACC cleared Hamdan of all charges, according to Iris Corp.
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