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London, 10th February 2004 - Axalto – the former Smart Cards and Terminals division of Schlumberger - has been honored with the “Frost & Sullivan Global Market Leadership Award” for “its exceptional performance in the global smart cards for GSM market over 2002 and 2003”. The award recognizes “Axalto's proven excellence in all areas leading to market leadership, including identification of market challenges, drivers and restraints, as well as superior strategy development and implementation”.

To select the award recipient, Frost & Sullivan analysts tracked revenue growth rates, market share and profitability of major participants in the global GSM market through primary and secondary research. Companies were further rated on criteria such as market and technology innovation, which identified Axalto as the industry leader in this respect.

Axalto, was already the leader in the GSM market in 2002, accounting for 28.0 percent of worldwide SIM card unit shipments. An exemplary performance in the first half of 2003 enabled the company to retain its hold on the number one position. Uncontested leadership in Java? technology, significant unit shipments, a healthy product mix and a very successful new brand launch are projected to help Axalto retain its market leadership.

Mr. Anoop Ubhey, senior smart card industry analyst at Frost & Sullivan comments: "Axalto understands the need to move into the high-end memory market before other smart card manufacturers. The company is also recognized as the pioneer and most committed to open platforms, as well as a leading player in terms of technology and functionality. This strategy, and straightforward business practices has enhanced its market share position and its reputation."

Axalto's focus on high-end microprocessor cards has allowed it to effectively meet demands for increased functionality within the SIM market. The company is, thus, well-positioned to leverage the significant demand shift from 16K and 32K cards to higher-end 64K and 128K cards. Shipments of 128K cards were key to Axalto's market leadership in 2003 and are anticipated to continue driving the company's growth in 2004 as well.

Axalto has a well-established global presence spanning over 30 countries, with customers in well over 100 countries. The company's emphasis on high-end SIM cards was instrumental in reinforcing its leadership position in Asia. In particular, the company has made strong gains in the fast-growing Chinese market. Axalto's success in Europe has derived from its ability to reliably deliver on its commitments and volumes.

"Axalto has always been flexible and ready to adapt and ramp up supply as per changes in market demand, something its nearest competitors have failed to do. This reputation is now bearing fruit for the company in new regions such as North and Latin Americas as well," adds Mr. Ubhey.

About Frost & Sullivan
Founded in 1961, Frost & Sullivan is recognized as a global leader in growth consulting. Frost & Sullivan Awards are presented to companies that demonstrate excellence in their industry, commending the diligence, commitment and innovative business strategies required to advance in the global marketplace. Frost & Sullivan rigorously analyses specific criteria to determine award recipients in a vast variety of market industries and landscapes. For further information, visit www.frost.com.

Media Contact at Frost & Sullivan
Kristina Menzefricke
Frost & Sullivan
Phone +44 (0) 207 343 8376
Email: kristina.menzefricke@frost.com
http://www.awards.frost.com

Published on: 12:00AM on 10th February 2004