Hologram Manufacturers Association of India (HoMAI), which was founded sixteen years ago on December 1, 1998 as the world’s second and Asia’s only association representing holography, has been re-launched this year with a broader mandate as Authentication Solution Providers’ Association (ASPA).
ASPA members already protect over 10,000 brands worldwide through the identification of genuine products and documents. As the world’s first and only industry body of its kind, ASPA aims to comprehensively cover the broader interests of the entire authentication industry worldwide, including, but not limited to, holograms, optically variable devices (OVDs), taggants, security inks and substrates, watermarks, nanotechnologies, RFIDs, barcode/QR code-based digital tracking and verification systems, security and tamper-evident labels, and any other brand protection and authentication products.
ASPA works closely with worldwide peers and authorities, such as International Hologram Manufacturers Association (IHMA), Counterfeit Intelligence Bureau (CIB) and Interpol. It actively participates on matters of policy, and also plays a constructive role in ensuring that its members uphold a high pedigree of business ethics and values as prescribed by the ASPA Code of Conduct.
ASPA lays down guidelines to encourage adoption of best practices, quality standards and usage of advanced technology to provide customised, cost-effective and consistently reliable solutions. It also actively analyses industry trends and provides updates on global news, knowledge resources and best practices to its members. Members are bound by to ensure that they observe high standards of integrity and business ethics at all times.
ASPA’s vision is to become the global voice of authentication technology providers that facilitate brand protection through anti-counterfeiting, anti-tampering and tracking and tracing measures.
Manoj Kochar, ASPA president, said: ‘According to Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy (BASCAP) of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), the impact of the counterfeit and pirated goods on the global economy today stands at a staggering one trillion USD. We must develop a unified global strategy with powerful industry linkages and knowledge sharing platforms in order to stop illegal trade effectively.
‘ASPA is a call to unite various authentication solution providers across the world to galvanize our forces and strengthen this shield univocally. ASPA re-aligns our objectives to more accurately represent the transformation of products and services offered by our member companies. Our broader scope also covers a wide array of authentication technologies that have evolved over the years.'
Anil Rajput, senior vice-president of corporate affairs at ITC Limited, and chairman of FICCI Cascade (Committee against Smuggling & Counterfeiting Activities Destroying the Economy), said: 'I am glad to note the re-launch of ASPA, which will represent the even broader interests of the entire authentication solutions industry. On the technology vendor side, ASPA complements FICCI Cascade’s consumer and industry efforts in curbing counterfeits, by bringing together all types of authentication solutions on one platform. I hope that this move will help in rapid adoption of anti-counterfeiting, anti-tampering and tracking and tracing solutions, which will yield significant direct and indirect benefits in the form of increased revenues, brand perceptions, reduced litigation costs, and greater customer retention.'
Dr N.C. Saha, director of the Indian Institute of Packaging, an autonomous body under the Ministry of Commerce & Industry within the Indian government, said: ‘I believe ASPA is poised to play a much-needed and vital role in consolidating the entire gamut of authentication solutions, and catalyzing their adoption in various kind of packaging across all industry segments. Authentication of a product is invariably carried out through integration between the authentication technology and the packaging. I am confident that ASPA will meet the demand of modern consumers to effectively fight against the counterfeiters.'
As part of the re-launch, ASPA has developed a new website, at www.aspaglobal.com, which includes educational material on various types of authentication technology, tips on selecting the most relevant and effective authentication solution, case studies, whitepapers, industry news, member profiles, details of activities being undertaken by the association, reference material and access to ASPA’s quarterly journal, The Authentication Times.