EyeVerify celebrates global growth potential, vows to stay in Kansas City

EyeVerify, acquired last month by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. subsidiary Ant Financial, said Monday it’s focused on growing its Kansas City headquarters. The startup employs about 40 people.

Ant Financial wants to grow its customer base from 450 million users to 2 billion in the next 10 years.

EyeVerify’s biometric security technology uses a smartphone’s camera to verify a person’s identify by analyzing the whites of the eye and blood vessels, as well as microfeatures outside the eye to create what’s known as an eyeprint. The eyeprint becomes a key that replaces traditional passwords.

Chief executive Toby Rush said that he’d received “plenty of offers” to move the company to Boston or San Francisco, but that he resisted in order to stay in Kansas City.

Rush said the company is “always looking” to hire more employees and intends to keep its principal research and development work in Kansas City. He said EyeVerify particularly is looking for software engineers.

“I’m not cashing out,” Rush said. “I’m stepping up to a much larger game, a much larger vision. I see it as the next phase in the journey. … It’s taken a village to get us to where we are today. It’s going to take a global village to get us to the next level.”

Read more: Kansas City Star, Kansas City Business Journal

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