How Giesecke+Devrient Achieved a 2022 Commemorative Banknotes Award

The banknotes honored are not only particularly attractively designed, but also feature the highest security standards.
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Commemorative banknotes of Guatemala and Honduras have been named “Regional Banknote of the Year” at the High Security Printing Latin America industry conference, taking place in Mexico City. The award recognizes excellence in design, technical excellence and the security of a banknote or banknote series.

The Latin American states of Guatemala and Honduras have each issued a commemorative note to mark the 200th anniversary of their independence. Both notes, produced by Giesecke+Devrient (G+D), have now been awarded “Best Commemorative Banknote” at the High Security Printing Latin America Conference in Mexico City. The award is based on criteria of outstanding design, technical sophistication and highest security standards. The award-winning notes are designed to combine artistic standards with excellence in technology and security, while reflecting the country’s cultural background in an appealing way.

The 20-quetzales banknote features the well-known liberal president of Guatemala, Mariano Galvez.

Galaxy Thread for Lempira and Quetzales Banknotes

Honduras put the special series of 200 lempiras banknotes into circulation on 21 July 2021, while Guatemala launched the series of 20 quetzales banknotes on 6 September 2021.

“The banknotes we produce feature an extremely elaborate design, fitting for such a special occasion, as well as state-of-the-art security,” emphasizes Werner Reisch, who has overall responsibility for banknote sales at G+D.

Both commemorative notes use security elements embedded in the paper – threads, foils and watermarks – from Louisenthal, a subsidiary of G+D. The Galaxy technology within the security threads uses millions of micro mirrors per square centimeter. They create color changes and dynamic reflections that appear to move as soon as the banknotes’ tilt angle changes. In addition, 3D effects are possible, which, for example, make surface reliefs or a shift of spatially-appearing objects become visible. These high-tech security elements are also combined with Cleartext technology, in which previously applied layers are removed again in places. Thus, the text on the quetzales banknote alternates between the number 20 horizontally and BG (for Banco de Guatemala) vertically, depending on the tilt angle.

The 200 Lempiras banknote from Honduras celebrates the 200th anniversary of independence.

World First For the 200th Anniversary of Independence

The Honduran 200 lempiras banknote is the first banknote in the world to contain a registered Galaxy thread, with different and precisely-positioned windows. When the thread is inserted into the paper with register accuracy, each thread window is assigned a specific motif, allowing the thread and banknote design to be precisely matched. When the Lempira banknote is tilted, the view in the top and bottom windows changes from the number 200 to the image of a bell, and back again. The middle window shows a special paper parchment (Pergamino) and a quill. In addition, all three windows contain a dynamic circle that appears to move beneath the surface. In this way, the registered thread is harmoniously, and at the same time, strikingly integrated into the banknote as part of the main motif.

G+D produced 25 million of Guatemala’s 20 quetzales banknotes and 50 million of Honduras’ 200 lempiras banknotes.

“We congratulate our central bank partners in Guatemala and Honduras on the award for their commemorative notes,” said Clemens Berger, Chairman of the Board of Managing Directors at Louisenthal. “They are prime examples of how security and design language alike can be taken to a new level thanks to the underlying technology.”


For more information, visit Giesecke+Devrient’s website or their YouTube channel.

In 2019, a Thai banknote was awarded for their security features. They came from Louisenthal, a 450-year-old company that is part of the Giesecke+Devrient group since 1991.