April 26, 2018 / 9:59 AM / 10 months ago

Fingerprint Cards main owner Carlstrom to replace chairman, several board members quit

FILE PHOTO: A person uses a sensor for biometric identification on a smartphone in Berlin, Germany, in this October 16, 2015 file photo. REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch/Files

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Biometrics company Fingerprint Cards (FINGb.ST) (FPC) on Thursday proposed its main shareholder and former CEO Johan Carlstrom replace the current chairman despite his upcoming trial for suspected insider trading.

The fingerprint sensor and iris recognition company has issued a string of profit warnings over the past year; cutting staff in the face of slow demand and price pressure and suffering a near 50 percent fall in its share price so far this year.

Carlstrom was replaced as CEO in 2014 after police launched a probe into suspected insider trading in Fingerprint, and he will face a trial at a Stockholm district court in November. He has denied the allegations and declined to comment on the board changes on Thursday.

Last month the company said its CFO Hassan Tabrizi and Jan Johannesson, vice president strategy and corporate development, would leave the company.

On Thursday it said current chairman Jan Wareby and board members Asa Hedin, Carl-Johan von Plomgren and Ann-Sofie Nordh had all declined re-election to the board.

The former stock market star had its big breakthrough in 2015 when demand for fingerprint sensors in smartphones and tablets soared after other manufacturers followed the lead of Apple, but has since faced increased competition.

In January it forecast weak first-quarter revenue citing a slow Chinese smartphone market. It is due to report quarterly earnings on May 3.

Carlstrom, who was the company’s CEO during 2009-2015, owns 15.9 percent of Fingerprint, according to the company’s website citing data from the end of 2017.

The shares were down by 0.4 percent at 0946 GMT.

Reporting by Helena Soderpalm and Olof Swahnberg; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle

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