GPT makes Singapore smartcard connection

GPT makes Singapore smartcard connection
Alex Mayhew-Smith GPT has significantly strengthened its smartcard operations in Asia with a manufacturing agreement with SingTel, Singapore’s telecommunications authority. The UK-based company, in the top five of Europe’s smartcard manufacturers, is to set up a manufacturing facility in Singapore capable of producing up to 60 million cards – payphone and smartcards – in the first year of operation. “It is a major opportunity for investment,” said Paul Seward, GPT’s sales and marketing director for card technology. “SingTel is a dominant player in payphones and to have it as a partner is very important.” The joint venture builds on a relationship between the two companies going back to 1989, with GPT supplying SingTel with 40 million cards a year. The agreement, made at this week’s CommunicAsia exhibition, will also lead to a SingTel-GPT card technology centre in Singapore and a joint marketing organisation. “GPT will co-operate with SingTel’s research and development centre by bringing its card skills and expertise to the technology centre,” said Seward. Seward also highlights the service skills GPT brings to the agreement. In its recent contract with Boots in the UK, GPT supplied all the cards within two days of receiving the specs. Undaunted by recent economic turmoil in the region, Seward insists that the agreement gives GPT enormous prospects. “Some of the countries in the area still need to organise their infrastructure, for which there will be a need for smartcards.”


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