UrbanAlps AG and its Stealth Key startup closed a CHF 2.5M (Swiss Francs), equivalent to $2.5 M, series A financing round to finally move into full-scale production for its high-security 3D printed key and lock system. The financing round allowed the 3D metal printing start-up to overcome the death-valley between prototyping and serial production. With high-security products shipped to 4 continents, thousands of Stealth Keys 3D metal printed and close to a hundred customers, the Stealth Key targets its expansion to the German security market.
Stephan Lichtsteiner, captain of the Swiss national football team, figures among the investors. The rest of the funding came from a group of 7 Swiss, German, Finnish and Norwegian industrialists. “There is much more than meets the eye than a mechanical key,” said Dr. Alejandro Ojeda, co-founder and CEO. “We are very happy that well-known industrialists share and support our vision. To take a centuries-old industry of drilling holes in sheets of metal to 3D metal printing, with all its implications. With a team growth from 4 to 10 members, from the security and laser industries, 2018 was a memorable year for UrbanAlps AG, culminated with winning the «Oscar of Security» at Security Essen 2018.”
The Stealth Key is the world’s first 3D metal printed key. A mechanical key hiding its mechanical security code inside, so it cannot be seen and, therefore, not photographed or scanned. A superior level of key copy protection to address the growing security breach of unauthorized key copies by the masses.
Founded in Switzerland by pioneering engineers with expertise in high security and 3D metal printing, the security firm UrbanAlps employs Stealth Technology for mechanical keys, cylinders and padlocks for commercial and governmental clients worldwide. At the core of the company is an advanced engineering laboratory based in Zürich, Switzerland. Satellite offices have also been established in Dubai (UAE) and Prague (CZ).
“Building a start-up is very hard, building a hardware start-up adds further constraints like limited product scalability and larger financial investment needs,” continued Dr. Ojeda. “It is a very complex mission, where product fit, timing, know-how and luck are fundamental and even with all, chances of survival are narrow. We have seen many amazing Swiss hardware start-ups from our generation shut down while we all pushed across the Death Valley to serial production. Still, there is a group of Swiss entrepreneurs and start-ups that, despite the odds, have a lifetime mission to bring innovation to the world atoms, whatever it takes.”