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Sarantel to supply GPS antennas to Leica

Sarantel been chosen to supply German upmarket camera group Leica with miniature antennas to enable photographers to accurately tag the location of images.
Sarantel to supply GPS antennas to Leica

Sarantel (LON:SLG) has been chosen to supply legendary German camera group Leica with miniature antennas to enable photographers precisely to tag the location of images.

The group's  SL1204 active GPS antenna will go into a handgrip accessory for Leica's M-System digital camera range to add GPS capability and allow photographers to save exposure location information in the Exchangeable Image File Format (EXIF) data. 

EXIF is used for geotagging images and to sort and display images according to location.

Jesko von Oeynhausen, product manager of M-System at Leica, said that Sarantel’s antenna had enabled it to integrate robust and reliable GPS functionality, ensuring geotagging data is consistently available to photographers.

David Wither, Sarantel’s chief executive, added it was a first design win for the company in a very important developing market for GPS. 

He said digital camera makers around the world are facing challenges in providing consumers with reliable GPS performance for geotagging applications and he was pleased Leica had selected Sarantel’s technology.

Broker Xcap said that while the deal was relatively small, it was "very encouraging" and a massive quality endorsement.

Tim Freeborn, at Xcap, said he was leaving its forecasts unchanged as the initial order is for 3,000 pieces at $10 each, though this only covers the first quarter’s volume, but added it moves the story "decisively in the right direction".

“In the medium term we suspect the company’s real edge will come from deploying its superior technology in 4G phone systems.

“For instance the patchwork of frequencies which make up 4G around the world means devices will need several different antennas. Sarantel’s antennas can operate close to each other without interference. The current  MV [market value] of £2.5m is utterly ludicrous for a company whose debt is guranteed by its US defence customers."

Northland added that while Sarantel has been able to demonstrate a strong technological pedigree around ceramic filtering antennas, it has historically struggled with commercialisation.

Today's deal, June’s wins in asset tracking and the existing business in the military suggests progress is being made, the broker added.

The current Enterprise Value of £2.9m attaches little value to the contract base or the underlying intellectual property or patent bank.


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