Mechanical keys are cheap and convenient; however, in the age of 3D printing they can be easily copied. UrbanAlps has found a solution to address this security issue. The startup developed an additively manufactured metallic Stealth Key, which hides most of its mechanical security-features internally, hence making the key unscannable.
Stephan Lichtsteiner among the investorsRecently, the startup completed a financing round, raising CHF2.5 million from a group of seven Swiss, German, Finnish and Norwegian industrialists and from the famous Swiss football player Stephan Lichtsteiner. The funds enabled the company to commence mass production.
Alejandro Ojeda, co-founder and CEO comments: “Our product should not be seen as a mechanical key that is slightly more complex. The industry we are in has been characterised for centuries by drilling holes in metal sheets. Our vision is to take this traditional industry to the age of 3D metal printing. We are very happy that well known industrialists share and support this vision.”
UrbanAlps also celebrates the achievements it has reaped in the previous year. Besides closing the financing round, the startup team grew from four to ten members and won the «Oscar of Security» at Security Essen 2018.
Alejandro Ojeda said: “building a start-up is difficult; building a hardware start-up adds further constraints like limited product scalability and larger financial investment needs. It is a very complex mission, where product fit, timing, knowhow and luck are fundamental. Even with everything in place, the chance of survival is low. 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. I am happy to see that there is still a group of Swiss entrepreneurs and start-ups that, despite the odds, have a lifetime mission to bring hardware innovation to the world of atoms, whatever it takes.”(SK)
Picture: UrbanAlps co-founder and CEO Alejandro Ojeda with a Stealth Key.