New optical authentication solutions for a high denomination African banknote and an ID document were joint winners at the Excellence in Holography Awards 2022, organised by the industry trade body, International Hologram Manufacturers Association (IHMA).

Germany’s Louisenthal and France’s IDEMIA were joint winners of the ‘Best Applied Security Product’ category. 

The Reserve Bank of Malawi’s new 5,000 Kwacha features a LEAD foil stripe from Louisenthal, which appears on the left of the notes and displays a combination of vibrant effects and tones created from holographic and micro-mirror technologies. The top shows an animated sun, true colour portrait of former president Dr. Banda, denomination value, a three-dimensional fish from Lake Malawi with depth background, “Reserve Bank of Malawi” and RBM logo. This foil shows achromatic and rainbow effects when the note is tilted.

The judges were particularly impressed by the high public recognition the feature provides together with its application as a strong security and authentication device to thwart banknote anti-counterfeiting.

Louisenthal and France’s IDEMIA were joint winners of theBest Applied Security Product” category.

IDEMIA’s LASINK Helios technology is linked to a DOVID (Diffractive Optical Variable Image Device) and combined with holographic technology displays striking optical effects, such as colour variations of the portrait including a full polychromatic view with true colours, which vary depending on the angle of view. Easy to inspect, resistant to multiple types of fraud and durable, the use validates both secondary and main portrait images on ID documents, thus confirming the identity of the document holder. Both images are interlinked to make forgery virtually impossible, deterring any attempted fraud.

Foil and security feature producer KURZ also won theInnovation in Holographic Technology” for its KINEGRAM DYNAMIC surface-applied security features for banknotes.

Germany’s foil and security feature producer KURZ was flying high after winning the “Innovation in Holographic Technology” for its KINEGRAM DYNAMIC technology that showcases innovative surface-applied security features for banknotes. The technology, launched earlier this year, is based on micro-lenses which, in combination with diffractive features, provides security effects with movement, colour change, and depth that can be checked by the public to confirm a banknote’s authenticity.

The Excellence in Holography awards recognise outstanding achievement, marking success for suppliers, manufacturers, and end-users at the forefront of the sector who have brought forward innovative or commercially viable hologram products or techniques over the last 12 months. 

This year’s event, held online 5-6 December, comes as the IHMA continues to develop its role as the leading voice for those involved in global commercial holography.

Chair of the IHMA, Dr. Paul Dunn, commended the standard of entries as being of the highest quality, representing an innovative industry at the forefront of the fight against brand piracy and counterfeiting.

In congratulating all the winners, he said, “These awards mark ongoing advancement in the design, development, and technology of commercial holograms, which continue to find fresh and innovative ways to add value and heightened levels of security to products used by millions of consumers the world over.”

The IHMA ( is made up more than 80 of the world’s leading hologram companies. Members include the leading producers and converters of holograms for banknote security, anti-counterfeiting, brand protection, packaging, graphics, and other commercial applications around the world, and actively cooperate to maintain the highest professional, security and quality standards

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Paul Dunn is chairman of the International Hologram Manufacturers Association. He has been involved in the Optical Security industry for 30 years with an array of experience in teaching and technology development, and is currently Director of Technology Innovation at OpSec Security Ltd.

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