De La Rue has completed the production of official licensed product authentication holograms for Fifa World Cup 2018 memorabilia, which give football fans the confidence that the products they buy are genuine.
The Basingstoke-headquartered business has worked with Fifa since 2006 on the last three World Cup tournaments. All official memorabilia is authenticated with De La Rue’s highly secure holographic labels, which protect against counterfeit goods.
The latest contract was signed in July 2016 after Fifa went out to market to procure the hologram programme for official licensed merchandise for the 2018 tournament.
De La Rue produced more than 120 million highly secure labels for use on the merchandise, which includes clothing, football stickers and souvenir items.
The process of producing the holograms included embossing, coating and laminating while die-cutting machinery used for the job came from AB Graphics.
The company’s first shipment in bulk of World Cup 2018 authentication labels was to its distribution partner, Octane5, in December 2016 and production finished prior to the start of the tournament.
The secure labels are easy to recognise and validate to check the product is not a fake, De La Rue said, and each one includes a high security customised hologram with a colour stereogram animation, which incorporates microprint, tamper evidence and an individual serial number.
These holograms, which are officially referred to as Licensed Authentication Devices, are distributed to Authorised Licensees and are very difficult to counterfeit.
De La Rue service delivery director Steve Mercer said: “We are incredibly proud to have again been selected to help to protect the licensed products for this year’s Fifa World Cup and hope fans feel confident they know they are getting the real deal when they see one of our holographic labels.
“They might seem simple enough, but they are in fact highly secure and include an array of features which guard against fraud and make it really tough to counterfeit.”
De La Rue also produces hologram labels for the UEFA (Union of European Football Associations) and the FA (Football Association UK).
The Fifa World Cup 2018 is taking place in Russia until Sunday (15 July). Having reached the semi-finals for the first time since the tournament was held in Italy in 1990, England will take on Croatia for a place in the final tomorrow night.