Pay By Touch faces bankruptcy petition

Solidus Networks—a biometric payment company that does business under the name Pay By Touch—has until next week to respond to an involuntary bankruptcy petition filed by four employees.

A representative of San Francisco-based Solidus said the company initially had 20 days to respond to the petition, filed on Nov. 1, adding that “we are not in bankruptcy.” She declined to comment further about the company’s response to the filing.

Solidus, which has been an active acquirer of biometric and loyalty marketing companies over the past several years, has raised more than $300 million in debt and equity from venture and hedge fund investors since 2003. Current backers include Plainfield Asset Management, Och-Ziff Capital Management and Farallon Capital Management. Mobius Venture Capital was an early investor, but sold shares in a later fund-raising round.

The company allows customers to pay for purchases by placing their index finger on a sensor for identification.

The bankruptcy petition is apparently one of several legal actions that the company is facing. The company has also been served with a securities fraud suit, two wrongful termination suits, and one breach of contract suit by an allegedly unpaid contractor, according to a report in VentureWire. Pay By Touch CEO and founder John Rogers has also filed for personal bankruptcy, according to a report in the San Francisco Business Times.