Founder of Biometric Identification Ecosystem Becomes 3000th Skolkovo Resident

22 July 2021

OVISION is the developer of a contactless pass entry system using facial recognition technology; the company recently marked the 3000th Skolkovo Foundation (VEB.RF Group) resident. The system helps manage large streams of people, ensures facilities’ security, allows for contactless payment using facial recognition, and processes images 2.5 times faster than competitors.

OVISION’s complex solution does not just comprise identification algorithms but also the devices themselves. The company’s capacity and location in St. Petersburg allow it to produce over 500 devices per month. It plans to increase that number to 1,500-2000 and to expand its product range. O.GATE is a terminal designed for building entrances, but another similar device called O.MINI, which is designed for offices and apartments, is also being added. In addition, the company plans to run a pilot project at Skolkovo’s residential quarter.

The facial recognition algorithms created by OVISION can process an image in 0.25 seconds at 99.5% accuracy — two and a half times faster than competitors. However, the antifraud system eliminates unauthorized access to a facility using a picture or a photo. The company develops the software and mobile applications available on iOS and Android and will be modified for new system tasks such as login management and facial recognition payment.

The previous device version drew interest from Russian transport entities, and the pilot terminals are running in three buildings at Skolkovo Innovation Center. The company plans to expand into international markets next year.


Konstantin Parshin, vice president and deputy director of the Skolkovo Foundation Information Technologies Cluster:

“Competition on the video analytics market and biometric identification is very high. Nonetheless, OVISION has succeeded in offering a valuable product that has found its niche and taken a worthy place in Skolkovo’s portfolio. The company’s projects in the transport sector couldn’t characterize client trust better, including among state clients. The recent project with VTB Bank, Visa, and the cooking store KiO Kukhnya involved biometric payment using facial recognition clearly demonstrated the company’s potential for scalability. I’m sure that Skolkovo experts’ highly qualified services and support will help OVISION reach new heights not just in Russia but in entering international markets.”


How to get Skolkovo resident status?

Those seeking Skolkovo status must apply for preliminary assessment — correctness and completeness of documents and compliance with Skolkovo’s innovation priorities.

Upon successful completion, there follows an assessment in the following categories:

  • The product or technology has potential competitive advantages over global analogs;
  • The product or technology has existing commercialization potential, minimum on the Russian market, and global markets in the long run;
  • The project is theoretically implementable and does not contradict fundamental scientific principles;
  • Key researchers, developers, and project managers have the necessary knowledge to successfully implement the project and expertise related to the subject of the project, scientific and industrial experience, and entrepreneurial potential.

>50% of expert voices for each criterion should be positive.

Skolkovo’s expert service is the largest mechanism in Russia for selecting promising technologies. It consists of over 750 experts – specialists in different fields of science, technology, and business. In ten years of its existence, over twenty thousand projects have been assessed.

Five experts are randomly selected from a list using an automated system to take part in the procedure in compliance with the innovative theme of the project. The assessment is anonymous so that the review would be as transparent and objective as possible.

From 2021 there is an additional mechanism for gaining Skolkovo residency status – Fast Track; this is a consultation program in the framework of a ten-day educational track with Foundation mentors teaching on presentation and form preparation. Teams that complete the program are then allowed to defend their projects (pitch session) before a panel of experts. The assessment result is received in one day instead of twenty, which is according to standard procedure.


Kirill Kaem, senior vice president of innovations at the Skolkovo Foundation:

“One shouldn’t forget that the project assessment, despite the authority of experts, is not the ultimate truth. Instead, it is a forecast that is more or less accurate. Quite often, a situation arises when developers are focused on the technology but devote attention to the type of client and commercialization models. Not only do you need to create a good product, but you also need to be able to sell it. That’s exactly why determining the market, and the advantages of your technology plays an essential role. Therefore, an accurate and well-structured presentation of information in the applicant’s form is half of the success of a project that could potentially provide Russia with a technological breakthrough.”


For further details on gaining Skolkovo residency status, go to our website

The Foundation’s priority fields are new technologies in IT and biomedicine, solutions linked to implementing sustainable development concepts, first and foremost through the efficient production and use of resources, and also in the field of Industry 4.0 technologies. In addition, they focus on the achievements of national development goals such as digital transformation, population preservation and the health and well-being of people, opportunities for self-actualization and talent development, a comfortable and safe living environment, decent and effective work, and successful entrepreneurship.

With the active support by the Foundation, Skolkovo residents in 2020 grew by 60%, exceeding 160 billion rubles. Over 18.8 billion rubles were invested into tech companies. The number of jobs in the Skolkovo ecosystem grew by 34% to 50.5 thousand. Skolkovo residents received 710 patents, of which 225 were on foreign territory.

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