Mobilisa plans hires after contract award

By Paul Gottlieb
Peninsula Daily News

PORT TOWNSEND — Intellicheck Mobilisa Inc. is continuing to increase its workforce after being awarded a software-license agreement to deploy security software at a luxury retailer’s stores nationwide — and in the face of an ongoing Securities & Exchange Commission investigation.

As part of its contract with the retail chain, Mobilisa cannot divulge the retailer’s identity, President and CEO Nelson Ludlow of Port Townsend said this week, adding that customer nondisclosure is common among company clients.

“They just don’t want to tell competitors what they are doing,” Ludlow said.

“They don’t want people to know, and we can live with that.”

In December, Mobilisa won a $671,962 wireless contract from the Jefferson County Public Utility District and the Northwest Open Access Network to build a wireless broadband network that is expected to be up and running by August.

The company will set up 30 wireless stations in schools, public buildings and public safety locations.

Hire two more

As of Monday, the company had 40 employees and wants to hire two more “mainly because we are trying to grow the company,” Ludlow said.

None of the Port Townsend-based company’s current employees is under investigation by the SEC, Ludlow said.

“The company is not under investigation,” he added.

“We are being 100 percent cooperative.”

Mobilisa reported losses of $381,296 on revenue of $2.1 million Nov. 8.

The company notified the SEC of suspicious activity in its stock Nov. 13.

Unanimous vote

On the same day the SEC was notified, former President and CEO Steve Williams was “separated from the company” in a unanimous vote of the board of directors, said Ludlow, a co-founder of Mobilisa.

“The word we are using is separated,” he said, adding that the action was taken “for a variety of reasons.”

Ludlow would not elaborate.

He would not comment on whether Williams is under investigation and did not know when the SEC will complete its review.

“My expectation is that these things take months,” Ludlow said.

Ludlow, chairman of the board of directors and the company’s chief scientist, succeeded Williams as president and CEO.

Less than a week earlier, the company had reported disappointing earnings.

Williams received $248,492 in salary and compensation in 2011, including a $10,000 bonus, according to the company’s filings with the SEC.

The company develops and markets wireless technology and identity systems for applications, including mobile- and handheld-access security systems.

The company’s technology also reads the back of driver’s licenses and transfers the information for credit card information and for returning merchandise for retailers nationwide, among them Target and L.L.Bean.

Clients include two dozen retail chains that individually post annual revenues of more than $1 billion.

The company also markets to banks, law enforcement agencies and military establishments.

Commercial customers include Wal-Mart, Toys R Us and JPMorgan Chase.

Other developments

The company also developed Wi-Fi for the state ferry system and has developed sensor- and camera-equipped monitoring buoys that can detect radiation, bad weather, oil spills and distant tsunami waves.

Intellicheck Mobilisa closed Friday at 88 cents a share, up from 65 cents Dec. 31 and down from 89 cents a share Dec. 31, 2011.

“My goal is to get the company healthier again,” Ludlow said.

The company’s 2012 earnings report will be released in March, he said.

Ludlow, 51, who has a doctorate in artificial intelligence, served as CEO and president of Mobilisa from 2001 to 2008.

After the company merged with Intellicheck, he was president and CEO of the combined company from 2008 to March 2011.

Williams was appointed CEO and president April 15, 2011.

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Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5060, or at paul.gottlieb@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: January 22. 2013 5:47PM
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