In the 1970s, RMC was offering each year its “gadget of the year”. I happened to be in charge of designing and producing the one of 1978, a solar lighter. I created my little firm which started specializing in gadgets. We then started to think about integrating holograms to certain objects. At this time, the technology was emerging and required a laser to read it. I met with people who worked in this field and they let me their lab’s key to conduct a few tries. Within a few months, we managed to produce holograms that could be read without a laser thank to our persistence and the researcher working just next to us.
That is how Hologram Industries’ story started, now renamed Surys. We quickly let go of gadgets for other projects. We started focusing on credit cards, hologram integrated on tax stickers, ID documents… Rather than staying on a working product, we tried to adapt our products and our skills to all the new supports which appeared since the 1980s.
When the euro was launched, we were one of two firms in charge of producing the security holograms on banknotes. This contract allowed us to strongly develop our activity and, even though we explored other fields, we definitely plan to come back to this sector in the near future. 150 countries in the world produce banknotes and usually renew them every 10 years. This represents about 10 projects a year on which we can place ourselves.
Carrying on in high technology Surys’ little story is a good example of a firm which managed to carry on in high technology despite a very quick evolution of demand. Our strength comes from the fact that we did not specialized in a product that was meant to disappear one day or another but in a wider field, here authentication. Today, we are working in holograms but also in nanostructures, smartphone face recognition, RFID chips… This involve of course important spending in R&D and in our firm’s security – a necessity when you work in field like struggle against forgery. But it is a condition to keep growing in our field without being dependent on the technological evolution.
This long-term strategy is actually visible in our results. Unlike many high tech firms, we haven’t known a sharp growth by surfing on a short-lived product. We are rather targeting 10% or 15% a year, which enables today to make 65 to 70 million euros of sales and to consider the 100 million in a near future, all of which with a mind tranquility assured by the diversity of our activities.
Fondateur et pdg Surys
Ingénieur de formation, diplômé de Centrale Marseille, Hugues SOUPARIS crée à 23 ans sa première entreprise spécialisée dans la conception et commercialisation d’objets publicitaires technologiques. En parallèle, en 1984, il crée Hologram Industries, société à laquelle il se consacre totalement à partir de 1986.