A brief history


Every great innovation starts with a story
...we´re proud to call this ours

Our story began in 1974 when lock maker Tor Sørnes heard reports about a woman being attacked by an intruder who broke into her hotel room.

Her story inspired him to invent a better door opening system – he wanted hotel guests and travellers to feel safe no matter where they were staying.

Sørnes’ innovation was VingCard, the world’s first recodable keycard door lock. It quickly became the global leader in room security for the hospitality industry.

At the same time, Bjørn Lyng, who was working on the world’s first electronic in-room safe, founded Elsafe. The two joined forces in 1994 to in order to better serve their customers and grow the company.

VingCard Elsafe has spent four decades helping hospitality partners in over 166 countries to welcome travellers. As industry pioneers we’ve led the way – employing innovative technology to make people feel safe and sleep easier wherever they are. Our advancements in design and functionality have enabled our clients in the hospitality industry to welcome, reassure and protect their guests, and make their businesses run more smoothly.

So the end result of our work is more than a keycard that works or a door that opens.

Where we might see pioneering innovation powered by years of R&D, the user experiences a feeling of being at ease and a sense of belonging —a single moment of truth as they arrive, open, then close the door behind them.

As VingCard Elsafe we’ve been both a pioneer and a leading brand for forty years. That’s not changed. Why we do what we do has not changed either.

What is changing rapidly however is the world in which we do business. This provides us with unique challenges and opportunities as we look to create a bright future for our company.

If we’re to remain innovative and competitive, we must keep pace with the demand from our customers for flawless experiences. As the technology surrounding key and keycards continues to evolve we must stay primed to communicate our value as an industry leader to our clients.

They are relying on us to take them to where they want to go.

VingCard Elsafe becomes ASSA ABLOY Hospitality

As we transition and grow stronger under the ASSA ABLOY Hospitality brand, we will build upon the reputation of our heritage brands VingCard and Elsafe to extend our global reach and innovation capability beyond hardware. This will enable us to differentiate ourselves, transcend the competition and be known as the leading hospitality security brand in the world.

We are fortunate to belong to a family of companies that gives us access to more than 1400 visionary engineers who work together to make sure that we continue to be innovative and quickly adapt to our customers’ changing needs. Access to a global network of sales and support teams enables us to be more responsive to our hospitality partners. We are leading the way in both serving emerging markets and developing solutions that our customers want, such as creating sustainable products.

The day when the key and keycard (as we know them) finally become digital is coming sooner than most people realise. When that happens what people will be left with is something intangible—an experience. Our clients will want a brand they know and trust to deliver that experience to them.

We need to continue to position ourselves as pioneers and world leaders in our field. We must be ready to embrace the future in which our clients and partners will do business.

ASSA ABLOY, representing total door opening solutions, is already recognized as a global leader in innovation We’ve made the Forbes “World’s 100 Most Innovative Companies” list for two consecutive years.

As ASSA ABLOY Hospitality we will continue to enable our partners to deliver millions of warm welcomes and positive moments of truth to their customers every day. 

Our goal for the future is to innovate in order to serve our clients and to fulfil the needs of the growing number of people who travel. We will continue to grow and evolve as a company and as a brand. We will innovate, drive quality and add more products to our portfolio. We will provide world-class service to our clients by expanding our reach with an increased local presence.

We will continue to build on our legacy.

Our purpose is not simply to lock and unlock more doors—it is to unlock the feeling of safety, security and belonging for more people, wherever they want to go