Showing posts with label Start-ups. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Start-ups. Show all posts

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Couchbase raises $105 million in Series G for NoSQL database

Couchbase, which offers a NoSQL database, raised $105 million in its Series G round of fundraising.

The new funding round was led by GPI Capital, also included oversubscribed participation from existing investors Accel, Sorenson Capital, North Bridge Venture Partners, Glynn Capital, Adams Street Partners, and Mayfield.

Couchbase said its customer base now exceeds 500 enterprises, including over 30% of the Fortune 100. In its latest fiscal year, the company reports over 70% total contract value growth, 50%+ new business growth, and 35%+ growth in average subscription deal size.  The company has nearly $100M in committed annual recurring revenue.

“To be competitive today, enterprises must transform digitally and use technology to get closer to their customers and improve the productivity of their workforces.  To do so, they require a cloud-native database built specifically to support modern web, mobile and IoT applications.  Application developers and enterprise architects rely on Couchbase to enable agile application development on a platform that performs at scale, from the public cloud to the edge, and provides operational simplicity and reliability,” said Couchbase President and CEO Matt Cain. “More and more, the largest companies in the world truly run their businesses on Couchbase, architecting their most business-critical applications on our platform.  This has become even more pronounced today as all companies are closely evaluating their digital strategies while carefully managing their capital allocation plans. Completing this funding round in the current climate is a testament to the importance of modern databases and the relevance of Couchbase as we continue our path to becoming a large, public company.”

Couchbase is headquartered in Santa Clara, California.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

5G Open Innovation Lab mentors first 17 start-ups

A new 5G Open Innovation Lab (5G OI Lab) is now underway with support founding partners Intel, NASA and T-Mobile.

5G OI Lab will provide engineering, technology and industry resources to help selected start-ups to develop, test and bring to market new use cases that unleash the potential of 5G.

"Our first program provides start-ups with virtual access to mentors and tools to collaborate directly with technology and business leaders to design and bring to life their vision and dreams for new 5G applications." said Jim Brisimitzis, general partner of the 5G Open Innovation Lab. "We've adapted our program into a virtual format in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. We are grateful to our partners for stepping up their support to ensure our first cohort has the best experience possible in a virtual environment."

The Lab has selected 17 companies as members of the first cohort that will participate in a 12-week program.  In addition to three companies that are currently in stealth mode, the first cohort includes the following startups:


"Ecosystem innovation is important to unlocking the potential of 5G, and as a founding member of the 5G Open Innovation Lab, we will help nurture start-ups developing 5G and edge applications that focus on digital transformation for industries," said Caroline Chan, vice president, Data Platforms Group and general manager, Network Business Incubation Division at Intel. "There is a breadth of opportunities across multiple industries, and to make them a reality it requires this type of industry collaboration to accelerate and bring innovative 5G solutions to market."

"5G has the potential to transform our world by enabling new, groundbreaking applications," said Neville Ray, president of technology at T-Mobile. "T-Mobile is building a 5G network unlike any other, with unmatched breadth and massive capacity nationwide. Through efforts like the 5G Open Innovation Lab, we're providing developers and startups with the tools to unleash transformative services for people across the country, benefitting everything from entertainment and gaming to education and public safety."

Applications are currently being accepted online for the Fall program.

http://www.5GOILab.com

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Rakuten to acquire Innoeye for cloud-native expertise

Rakuten Mobile agreed to acquire Innoeye, a privately-held company specializing in cloud technologies. The company has offices in Herndon, Virginia and Indore (MP), India. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Rakuten Mobile has already deployed Innoeye’s converged OSS, an end-to-end platform process automation solution, to support the 4G/5G cloud platform for its network launch in Japan. Plans are also underway to rollout this technology and expertise as part of the new Rakuten Communications Platform (RCP) offering to be made available to telecom companies and other enterprise customers around the world.

Rakuten Mobile has pursued a cloud-native architecture. The Rakuten Communications Platform contains all the elements of the Rakuten Mobile network, including telco applications and software from multiple vendors, OSS and BSS systems handling customer billing and activation systems, in addition to edge computing and virtual network management functions. Rakuten Communications Platform will be made available with an app-store-like interface where customers can tailor the platform to their local requirements.

“Since we first envisioned the launch of Rakuten Mobile two years ago, we have also planned to bring to market our own expertise and technology stack as a unique service that will enable operators around the world to deploy fully cloud-native telco networks of the future,” said Tareq Amin, Representative Director, Executive Vice President and CTO of Rakuten Mobile. “With the planned acquisition of Innoeye, we are one step closer to closing the circle in bringing to market a carrier grade telco cloud product that is as simple as click, purchase and deploy.”

“Innoeye is delighted by the opportunity to become part of the Rakuten Mobile family,” said Rajeev Gupta, CEO of Innoeye. “Joining hands with Rakuten Mobile will provide us with unique ability to contribute towards this large industry movement and create a highly innovative cloud-based communication platform that is open, scalable and highly secure. Rakuten Communications Platform will disrupt the industry and pave the way for the next level of innovation. We look forward to being a part of this journey.”

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Intel bets $132 million on 11 start-ups

Intel Capital announced investments totaling $132 million in 11 startups, and the company says it is on track to invest between $300 million and $500 million in technology companies in 2020, spanning technology domains in artificial intelligence, intelligent edge and network transformation.

Intel Capital’s New Investments:

  • Anodot (Redwood City, Calif.) uses machine learning to drive the future of analytics — autonomous business monitoring. Fortune 500 companies across telco, finance and digital sectors rely on Anodot’s real-time, contextual alerts to catch the incidents that impact revenue and costs. Examples include drops in success rate, customer incidents, app performance and other business metrics. By helping business users find and fix incidents quickly, Anodot helps customers cut incident management by as much as 80%.
  • Astera Labs (Santa Clara, Calif.) is a fabless semiconductor company that develops purpose-built connectivity solutions for data-centric systems to remove performance bottlenecks in compute-intensive workloads such as artificial intelligence and machine learning. The company’s product portfolio includes system-aware semiconductor integrated circuits, boards and services to enable robust connectivity for PCI Express® (PCIe®) and Compute Express Link™ (CXL) solutions.
  • Axonne (Sunnyvale, Calif.) develops next-generation high-speed Ethernet network connectivity solutions for automobiles. Axonne’s solutions integrate systems in the connected car, such as autonomous driving sensors and displays with compute clusters. The company’s proprietary mixed signal circuits, algorithms and digital signal processing help with demanding applications, such as autonomous driving and infotainment, that require a high degree of functional safety, reliability, security and electric vehicle-friendly power efficiency. These solutions also help to ease the transition of in-vehicle legacy electrical/electronic architectures to scalable and adaptable service-based zones and beyond.
  • Hypersonix (San Jose, Calif.) is an AI-powered autonomous analytics platform designed for consumer industries such as retail, restaurants, hospitality and ecommerce. Decision-makers need real-time actionable insights from disparate data sources, such as regional business performance or web traffic. Hypersonix’s platform empowers customers to make faster and smarter decisions that drive profitability, productivity and customer engagement through simple voice and text search, data visualization and interpretation.
  • KFBIO (Zhejiang, China) is a biotech company that builds digital pathology systems. Its pathology scanner improves on traditional microscopes with digital capabilities and connectivity. KFBIO’s medical image processing uses big data, cloud computing and AI to quickly and reliably scan and digitize images, making them easier to share for remote consultation with experts, and improve speed and accuracy of AI-aided pathologist diagnoses.
  • Lilt (San Francisco) aims to make the world’s information accessible to all with AI-powered language translation software and services. Traditional translation services can be time-consuming and costly – impeding companies from translating all the information that could be useful. Lilt’s software provides accurate, localized and cost-effective translation. Combining adaptive neural machine translation technology, a translation management system and professional translators, Lilt enables organizations to use language translation to scale their localization programs, accelerate go-to-market strategies and improve the global customer experience.
  • MemVerge (Milpitas, Calif.) is a software company founded on the vision that every application should run in memory. MemVerge's Memory Machine™ software is the foundation for a new era of Big Memory computing, providing petabyte-size pools of shared persistent memory and powerful data services so that data-centric applications such as AI, machine learning, financial market data analytics and high-performance computing are easier to develop and deploy. MemVerge's Big Memory software lowers the cost of memory, allows it to scale out and makes it highly available with memory data services such as ZeroIO™ snapshot, memory replication, and lightning-fast recovery.
  • ProPlus Electronics (Shandong, China) is an electronic design automation (“EDA”) company, specializing in advanced device modeling and fast circuit simulation solutions. ProPlus helps to close the divide between design and manufacturing with software that makes chip design faster and fabrication yields higher, allowing the semiconductor industry to create more powerful and diverse products.
  • Retrace (San Francisco) believes that smarter, more innovative use of dental data is essential for reducing the oral disease burden. Retrace applies artificial intelligence and other advanced technology in its predictive analytics platform that uses real-time data to improve dental decision-making. Retrace empowers health plans, providers, and patients to create a more cost-effective, evidence-based oral healthcare experience.
  • Spectrum Materials (Fujian, China) is a high-purity specialty gas and material supplier for semiconductor fabs. It has one of the largest germane production bases in Quanzhou, Fujian. Led by veteran industry experts, Spectrum Materials is dedicated to providing critical specialty gas and material solutions for advanced process node applications of multiple leading fabs around the world.
  • Xsight Labs (Kiryat Gat, Israel) develops innovative technology for accelerating next generation, cloud-based, data-intensive workloads such as machine learning, data analytics and disaggregated storage. In this data-centric era with exponential bandwidth growth, Xsight provides new chipset designs that enhance scalability, performance and efficiency.


https://newsroom.intel.com/news/intel-capital-invests-132-million-11-disruptive-technology-startups/#gs.6fgcf1

Monday, May 4, 2020

Intel acquires Moovit for Urban Mobility App

Intel has acquired Moovit, an Israeli-based mobility-as-a-service (MaaS) solutions company, for approximately $900 million ($840 million net of Intel Capital equity gain).

Moovit's urban mobility application offers multimodal trip planning by combining public transportation, bicycle and scooter services, ride-hailing, and car-sharing. The app has more than 800 million users and services in 3,100 cities across 102 countries. Moovit was founded in 2012 and has approximately 200 employees.

Moovit has also signed strategic partnership agreements with major ride-sharing operators and mobility ecosystem companies for analytics, routing, optimization and operations for MaaS. With this acquisition, Mobileye will be able to use Moovit’s large proprietary transportation dataset to optimize predictive technologies based on customer demand and traffic patterns, as well as tap into Moovit’s transit data repository of more than 7,500 key transit agencies and operators.

Intel says the addition of Moovit brings its Mobileye business closer to achieving its plan to become a complete mobility provider, including robotaxi services, which is forecast to be an estimated $160 billion opportunity by 2030.

“Intel’s purpose is to create world-changing technology that enriches the lives of every person on Earth, and our Mobileye team delivers on that purpose every day,” said Bob Swan, Intel CEO. “Mobileye’s ADAS technology is already improving the safety of millions of cars on the road, and Moovit accelerates their ability to truly revolutionize transportation – reducing congestion and saving lives – as a full-stack mobility provider.”

Mobileye enables advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) and is currently deployed on nearly 60 million vehicles with more than 25 automaker partners.

“Moovit’s massive global user base, proprietary transportation data, global editors community, strong partnerships with key transit and mobility ecosystem partners, and highly skilled team is what makes them a great investment,” said Professor Amnon Shashua, CEO of Mobileye. “Moovit is a strong brand trusted by hundreds of millions of people globally. Together, with Mobileye’s extensive capabilities in mapping and self-driving technology, we will be able to accelerate our timeline to transform the future of mobility.”

“We are excited to join forces with Mobileye and lead the future revolution of new mobility services,” said Nir Erez, Moovit co-founder and CEO. “Mobility is a basic human right, and as cities become more crowded, urban mobility becomes more difficult. Combining the daily mobility habits and needs of millions of Moovit users with the state-of-the-art, safe, affordable and eco-friendly transportation enabled by self-driving vehicles, we will be able to make cities better places to live in. We share this vision and look forward to making it a reality as part of Mobileye.”


  • Intel acquired Mobileye in 2017. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Saguna names Ido Gur as CEO

Saguna, which is developing a multi-access edge cloud (MEC) computing solution, named Ido Gur as its new CEO.

Gur previously served as CEO of GASNGO, CEO and President of VocalTec, and EVP Global Sales & Marketing of ECI Telecom.

"I am delighted to join the Saguna team," said Gur. "Its highly dedicated employees and its committed share-holders made outstanding progress over the years building state-of-the art products. Saguna is uniquely positioned to address the opportunities in the growing edge cloud market."

Saguna is based on Yokneam, Israel.

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Movandi raises $27M for mmWave routers/repeaters

Movandi, a start-up based in Irvine, California, raised $27 million in Series C funding for its 5G mmWave CPE.

5G mmWave solutions include 5G BeamXR active routers/repeaters and BeamX RF front-end for fixed wireless CPE, mobile devices, small cells, and Open Radio Access Networks (ORAN) radio units (RU). These products accelerate deployments across the complete 5G ecosystem from consumer and enterprise market segments, and applications from IoT, mobile, artificial Intelligence (AI), software defined networks and automotive. Not only enabling 5G infrastructure, but Movandi’s 5G mmWave system is to ensure that 5G mmWave technology can be broadly deployed in real-world scenarios by operators building the “interface of the internet.”

“We’re at an exciting inflection point in 5G mmWave operator deployments, we’re both scaling our active router platform and RF front-end deployments,” said Maryam Rofougaran, CEO and co-founder, Movandi. “We are working closely with 5G operators and system OEMs solving these 5G coverage challenges, by unlocking the true benefits of 5G that are only achieved with mmWave – that makes Movandi truly unique.”

The funding was led by WRVI Capital along with Cota Capital and DNX Ventures.

http://www.movandi.com


Stamus raises $1.5M for cybersecurity software

Stamus Networks, a start-up with offices in Indianapolis and Paris, France, announced $1.5 million in seed funding for its cybersecurity software.

The company said its approach clearly illuminates threats by correlating network traffic analysis and threat detection in real time.  The company was founded by the creators of the widely-deployed open source SELKS platform.

VisionTech Angels and Elevate Ventures, both Indianapolis-based investment groups, co-led the investment round. In addition, several independent angel investors participated.

“Stamus Networks addresses an important need in the marketplace for enterprise-scale cybersecurity and has created a unique enriched threat hunting solution,” said Vercie Lark, VIssionTech Angels investor and retired CIO. “Customers have told us the company’s Scirius platform allows them to replace several existing products and is very effective at proactively uncovering real threats. One of the most important factors we consider with any investment is the quality of the management team. Stamus Networks’ team brings a solid track record in the cybersecurity space with both commercial and technical successes.”

https://stamus-networks.com

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Cohesity raises $250 million for its web-scale data management

Cohesity, which offers a web-scale platform for data management, announced $250 million in Series E funding. The San Jose, California-based start-up is now valued at $2.5 billion, more than double the valuation from the company’s Series D round less than two years ago. With the new funding, Cohesity’s total funding since inception exceeds $650 million.

Cohesity specializes in hyperconverged secondary storage. Its hyperconverged appliance consolidates all secondary data and associated management functions on one unified solution, including backups, files, objects, test/dev copies, and analytics.
The company cited the following recent milestones:

  • 150 percent increase in recurring revenue, emphasizing the success of the company’s subscription-based software model.
  • 100 percent increase in customers as well as data under management.
  • 135 percent increase in the number of Cohesity’s new and existing customers that have licensed the company’s cloud capabilities.

“Closing a major funding round during these times of economic uncertainty is testament to the promise that our investors see in Cohesity,” said Mohit Aron, CEO and founder, Cohesity. “More enterprises globally are abandoning legacy offerings in favor of our modern, software-defined approach to data management that is incredibly simple to use -- critical during these challenging times as customers are looking to reduce total cost of ownership while enabling remote IT teams.”

The new funding was led by DFJ Growth, Foundation Capital, Greenspring Associates, and Wing Venture Capital. DFJ Growth and Greenspring Associates are new investors as are Baillie Gifford and Sozo Ventures. The round also includes broad support from existing investors, including Sequoia Capital and SoftBank Vision Fund 1, as well as strategic investors Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Cisco Investments.

Monday, April 6, 2020

Myriota raises $19M for satellite IoT

Myriota, a start-up based in Adelaide, Australia, announced  US$19.3 million in Series B funding for its low-cost and low-power satellite connectivity for the Internet of Things (IoT).

Myriota has pioneered a new way to retrieve data from anywhere on Earth through the connectivity between its constellation of satellites and low-power IoT modules. The company said its technology will revolutionize the way companies share information across multiple industries, such as agriculture, defense, mining, transport & logistics, and more.

The new funding round was led by Hostplus and Main Sequence Ventures. Additional investors include In-Q-Tel, Inc., Right Click Capital, Singtel Innov8, Boeing HorizonX, South Australian Venture Capital Fund, and Malcolm Turnbull – the former Australian Prime Minister who led the government that established the Australian space agency in 2017. This latest round of funding brings Myriota’s total funding to more than US$37 million.

“This is a critical time for IoT. Presently, 90 percent of the earth’s surface lacks connectivity. At Myriota, we’ve been focused on filling that gap and overcoming constraints in existing infrastructure. With this new round of funding, we’ll continue to grow our network of satellites to deliver on an affordable, environmentally friendly, and powerful solution to make data accessible for our global customer base,” said Alex Grant, Co-founder and CEO, Myriota.

"Myriota is a leader and innovator in low cost, low power IoT. They have paved the way in bringing products to market for global and local applications, both here in Australia's flourishing space sector and across the world. Myriota’s growth plans will only strengthen its ability to provide industry-leading connectivity across its network of international partners,” said Malcolm Turnbull, 29th Prime Minister of Australia.

https://myriota.com

Monday, March 2, 2020

Lockheed Martin Ventures invests in Ayar Labs

Lockheed Martin Ventures has made a strategic investment in Ayar Labs, a start-up that is developing  monolithic in-package optical I/O (MIPO) solution for applications that require high bandwidth, low latency and power efficient short reach interconnects. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Ayar Labs publicly demonstrated its monolithic electronic photonic TeraPHY chiplet at the Supercomputing 2019 conference and is now working with select semiconductor manufacturers, OEM systems builders, and end users on sampling and co-design partnerships in 2020. The company is based in Santa Clara, California.

“We are excited to welcome Lockheed Martin Ventures as a strategic investor,” said Charles Wuischpard, CEO of Ayar Labs. “Working with key system integrators like Lockheed Martin, who really understand the value of our solution and how to design it into future complex systems, is incredibly important. In that sense, we view this relationship as more than funding alone, but as an important long-term working relationship as well.”

Ayar Labs selected for Intel’s DARPA PIPES Project

Ayar Labs has been selected as Intel’s optical I/O solution partner for their recently awarded DARPA PIPES (Photonics in Package for Extreme Scalability) project.

The PIPES project aims to develop integrated optical I/O solutions co-packaged with next generation FPGA/CPU/GPU and accelerators in Multi-Chip Packages (MCP) to provide extreme data rates (input/output) at ultra-low power over much longer distances than supported by current technology. In the first phase of the project, the Ayar Labs TeraPHY chiplet will be co-packaged with an Intel FPGA using the AIB (Advanced Interconnect Bus) interface and Intel’s EMIB silicon-bridge packaging. “We’re seeing an explosion of Datacenter workloads that have an insatiable demand for bandwidth and the need to connect devices at rack-scale distances,” said Vince Hu, VP of Strategy and Innovation for Intel’s FPGA products. “The best way to do that is with optical interconnect and by using an Ayar Labs chiplet(s), we can achieve very high bandwidth at low latency and low power consumption.”

“Bringing optical connectivity all the way into the CPU/SOC package has long been one of the ‘Holy Grail’ projects in High Performance and Hyperscale Computing, as it unleashes the performance of ever more powerful computing and network processors and removes a major bottleneck and set of constraints in systems architecture and design,” said Charles Wuischpard, CEO of Ayar Labs, “Moreover, the energy consumed in moving data through a system is now very significant and growing, and the best way to manage that is to move the data optically from end to end. We are pleased to be selected by Intel as the optical solution for their DARPA PIPES project and look forward to a multi-year collaboration.”

The TeraPHY chiplet is manufactured on GLOBALFOUNDRIES' 45nm platform, which enabled Ayar Labs to build a monolithic, single-die solution that integrates both electrical and optical photonic circuits and devices on a single chip.

“We have worked in close collaboration with Ayar Labs to deliver a new class of integrated electronic, photonics solutions,” said Anthony Yu, vice president of Computing and Wired Infrastructure at GF. “Going forward, we’re excited to work with the pioneers at Ayar Labs to continue disrupting the market by combining our next generation 45nm platform, targeted to future CMOS-based photonics solutions, with their differentiated technology that will push the limits of chip communication bandwidth for high-performance computing, cloud and AI applications.”

Ayar Labs also announced customer sampling of its fully integrated TeraPHY chiplet starting in early Q1 2020.

http://www.ayarlabs.com

Monday, January 27, 2020

Iguazio raises $24M for its data science platform

Iguazio, a start-up based in Herzliya, Israel, raised $24 million in funding for its data science platform for real time machine learning applications.

The Iguazio data science platform helps data scientists create real-time AI applications while working within their chosen machine learning stack.

The funding was was led by INCapital Ventures, with participation from existing and new investors, including Pitango, Verizon Ventures, Magma Venture Partners, Samsung SDS, Kensington Capital Partners, Plaza Ventures and Silverton Capital Ventures.

“This is a pivotal time for AI. Our platform helps data scientists push the limits of their real-time AI applications and see their impact in real business environments,” said Asaf Somekh, co-founder and CEO of Iguazio. “With support from INCapital, Kensington Capital Partners, and our other investors, we are ready to expand our international team and reach our ambitious goals.”

http://www.iguazio.com

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

VMware to acquire Nyansa for AIOps

VMware agreed to acquire Nyansa (“knee-ans-sah”), a start-up based in Palo Alto, California, that specializes in AI-based network analytics. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Nyansa Voyance is a vendor-agnostic, cloud-based AIOps platform. The solution consolidates key functionality within conventional network monitoring tools into a single, multifunction analytics platform to deliver visibility into and behavioral analysis of critical device performance across the entire infrastructure. The company's founders include Abe Ankumah (Chief Executive Officer),
Anand Srinivas (Chief Technology Officer), Daniel Kan (VP of Engineering). Investors include Formation | 8, Shirish Sathaye, and Intel Capital.

VMware said Nyansa will help customers better operate and troubleshoot the virtual cloud network and enable self-healing networks.

“The acquisition of Nyansa will accelerate VMware’s delivery of end-to-end monitoring and troubleshooting capabilities for LAN/WAN deployments within our industry-leading SD-WAN solution,” said Sanjay Uppal, vice president and general manager, VeloCloud Business Unit, VMware. “Nyansa is a proven solution that solves many of the shortcomings of today’s vendor-specific solutions. Nyansa currently analyzes user network traffic from more than 20 million client devices across thousands of customer sites at companies including Tesla, Uber, Lululemon, Rooms To Go, GE Healthcare, SF International Airport, Stanford, Northeast Georgia Healthcare System and many others.”

“Joining forces with VMware provides an amazing platform for Nyansa to continue executing on the vision of a new networking paradigm: an analytic-powered and software-defined virtual cloud network that connects clients to containers in dynamic and distributed enterprises,” said Abe Ankumah, chief executive officer, Nyansa. “Nyansa and VMware are perfectly aligned in technology, products and culture. Following the close of the acquisition, we will continue to advance our AI-driven multi-vendor network analytics platform and double-down on end-to-end user experience and IoT operational assurance.”

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Skylo raises $103M for IoT over existing geostationary satellites

Skylo, a start-up based in San Mateo, California, emerged from stealth to unveil its plans to create "the world’s most affordable and ubiquitous network that connects any machine or sensor.

Skylo will leverage the cellular Narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT) protocol via satellite, making it possible to instantly connect billions of sensors on objects and machines in remote areas. Skylo’s new satellite connectivity will use existing geostationary satellites without the need to add new infrastructure in space. The company says it has proven its end-to-end technology and completed successful commercial field trials with major enterprise and government customers. The company’s customers already include enterprise and government entities in a range of industries including automotive, railways, agriculture and maritime.

Skylo recently completed a Series B round of funding which raised $103 million, led by SoftBank Group and joined by all existing investors. The company previously raised $13 million in a Series A round that was co-led by DCM and Innovation Endeavors, and joined by Moore Strategic Ventures. The new

“Skylo envisions a world where connectivity for machines, sensors and devices is as ubiquitous as the sky,” said Skylo co-founder and CEO Parthsarathi “Parth” Trivedi. “This low-cost, global fabric of connectivity for machine data will be transformative for entire industries.”

Skylo’s end-to-end solution encompasses the Skylo Hub, the Skylo Network, the Skylo Data Platform and Skylo API. Mass manufacturing of the Skylo Hub is underway and the Skylo Network is already live with early customers.

  • Skylo Hub — The Skylo Hub is a self-installed, easy-to-use satellite terminal that connects to the Skylo Network. It has a suite of onboard sensors to sense geolocation and acceleration, and operates like a wireless “hot spot” for a variety of external sensors such as vehicle on-board diagnostics (OBD2), temperature sensors, and standard mobile or tablet devices. The Hub uses off-the-shelf components from the cellular world, which drastically reduces the cost of the Hub and increases sensor and device compatibility. Skylo’s digitally-steered antenna technology makes the device so compact that the Hub itself is 8” x 8”, and the antenna can even be OEM-installed onto most vehicles, utilities infrastructure, and other industrial equipment. The Skylo Hub has a built-in battery, or can connect directly to external power sources, including solar.
  • Skylo Network — Skylo has also developed a proprietary method of efficiently transmitting data; this technology minimizes satellite usage costs, a cost savings that is passed onto Skylo customers.
  • Skylo Data Platform and Skylo API — The Skylo Data Platform and API helps customers to manage their Skylo Hubs remotely and visualize, analyze and act on the data that is generated, sent, and received via connected devices.

Skylo was founded in 2017 by CEO Parth Trivedi, Chief Technology Officer Dr. Andrew Nuttall and Chief Hub Architect Dr. Andrew Kalman. The company’s current Board of Directors includes Board Chairman former U.S. Ambassador Terry Kramer, David Chao of DCM, Scott Brady of Innovation Endeavors, Harpinder “Harpi” Singh of Innovation Endeavors, and Skylo CEO Trivedi. Following the receipt of required regulatory approvals, SoftBank Group will also have a representative on the Board of Directors, who will be Yoshi Segawa. Skylo has offices in San Mateo, Calif., Bangalore, India, and Tel Aviv, Israel, and is growing the team globally to support its fast-growing customer base.

Thursday, January 16, 2020

2020 SPIE Startup Challenge draws 42 companies

Forty-two photonics business startups from 14 countries will participate in the 2020 SPIE Startup Challenge semi-finals held during SPIE Photonics West on 4 February. Forty-two photonics business startups from 14 countries will participate in the 2020 SPIE Startup Challenge semi-finals held during SPIE Photonics West on 4 February. On 5 February, 12 finalists will compete for cash prizes from Jenoptik as well as for business support from Challenge partners and sponsors. Prizes include $10,000 for first place as well as $5,000 in products from Edmund Optics; $5,000 for second place; and $2,500 for third place. In addition, Early-stage Entrepreneurship travel grants have been awarded to three of the semi-finalists.

On 5 February, 12 finalists will compete for cash prizes from Jenoptik as well as for business support from Challenge partners and sponsors. Prizes include $10,000 for first place as well as $5,000 in products from Edmund Optics; $5,000 for second place; and $2,500 for third place. In addition, Early-stage Entrepreneurship travel grants have been awarded to three of the semi-finalists.

https://spie.org/industry-resources/industry-events/spie-startup-challenge/2020-semi-finalists?SSO=1

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Zinier raises $90M for AI-driven automation

Zinier, a start-up based in San Mateo, California, raised $90 million in Series C funding for its efforts to transform field service workforces with AI-driven automation.

Zinier said its intelligent field service automation platform, called ISAC, helps organizations work smarter—from the back office to the field—to solve problems more quickly, fix things before they break, and maintain the services that we rely on every day.

“Services that we rely on every day - electricity, transportation, communication - are getting by on centuries-old infrastructure that requires a major upgrade for the next generation of users,” said Arka Dhar, co-founder and CEO of Zinier. “A field service workforce powered by both people and automation is necessary to execute the massive amount of work required to not only maintain these critical human infrastructures, but to also prepare for growth. Our team is focused on enabling this transformation across industries through intelligent field service automation.”

New investor ICONIQ Capital led the round with new participation from Tiger Global Management, and return investors Accel, Founders Fund, Nokia-backed NGP Capital, France-based Newfund Capital and Qualcomm Ventures LLC. The funding will support global customer adoption and expansion of Zinier’s AI-driven field service automation platform, ISAC.

http://www.zinier.com

Joby Aviation raises $590M for its VTOL aircraft

Joby Aviation, a start-up based in Santa Clara, California, raised $590 million in Series C funding for its development of an electric air taxi.

Joby Aviation is working on an all-electric VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) aircraft for the launch of the emerging on-demand urban air taxi market. The company says its aircraft is capable of speeds of 200 miles per hour and can fly over 150 miles on a single charge.

“We are building a new system for transportation to transform your daily life, at greater safety and, in time, at a similar cost to driving,” said Joby Aviation founder and CEO JoeBen Bevirt. “This collaboration with Toyota represents an unprecedented commitment of money and resources for us and this new industry from one of the world’s leading automakers. Toyota is known globally for the quality and reliability of their products driven by meticulous attention to detail and manufacturing processes. I am excited to harness Toyota’s engineering and manufacturing prowess helping to drive us to achieve our dream of saving a billion people an hour a day.”

The funding round was led by Toyota Motor Corporation. Prior investors, including SPARX Group, Intel Capital, Capricorn Investment Group, JetBlue Technology Ventures, Toyota AI Ventures, and AME Cloud Ventures, also contributed to the round, and were joined by new investors Baillie Gifford and Global Oryx (ALJ family’s investment arm). Shigeki Tomoyama, the Executive Vice President of Toyota Motor Corporation, will join Joby Aviation’s board of directors.

Joby Aviation has now raised $720 million to date.

https://www.jobyaviation.com/


Sunday, January 12, 2020

Alitheon raises $14.9 million for machine vision software

Alitheon, a start-up based in Bellevue, Washington, closed $14.9 million in venture capital financing for its machine vision software.

Alitheon's FeaturePrint technology transforms how objects, components and finished products are authenticated, tracked and traced across supply chains and distribution systems throughout the world. Once registered by Alitheon's optical artificial intelligence system, any individual item can be subsequently identified wherever it exists to verify authenticity, determine place and time of origin, detect signs of tampering, measure wear and identify grey market and counterfeit products including unauthorized "over runs" and previously rejected products. Unauthorized and counterfeit items cost legitimate manufacturers more than a trillion dollars and claim as many as a million lives a year.

Participants in the round include BMW i Ventures, IPD Capital and Shasta Ventures alongside current and former senior management from Accenture, Boeing and Fidelity.

https://www.alitheon.com

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

John Chambers recruits Pankaj Patel to venture firm

JC2 Ventures, a venture capital established by former Cisco CEO John Chambers, appointed Pankaj Patel as Partner and Chief Strategy Officer.

Patel previously served as the Executive Vice President and Chief Development Officer for Cisco Systems, where he was responsible for running and growing multi-billion-dollar products and businesses across service provider and enterprise market segments. He reported to the CEO as the engineering head of the company’s $36.8 billion product and solution portfolio and drove the business and technology strategy across Cisco’s Routing, Switching, Wireless, Security, Mobility, Video, Collaboration, Data Center and Cloud offerings, delivered by a global team of more than 28,000 engineers. Pankaj was also responsible for defining the priorities and investment allocation of $6 billion in R&D spend annually.

“After working with Pankaj for more than 20 years, I am thrilled to have him join the JC2 Ventures team as Partner and Chief Strategy Officer,” said John Chambers, Founder and CEO of JC2 Ventures and former Executive Chairman and CEO of Cisco.

https://www.jc2ventures.com/news/2020/1/6/pankaj-patel-joins-jc2-ventures-as-partner-and-chief-strategy-officer

Monday, January 6, 2020

Investment firm acquires Armis for $1.1 billion -- enterprise IoT security

Insight Partners will acquire Armis, a start-up specializing in enterprise IoT security, for $1.1 billion in cash.

Armis, which is based in Palo Alto, California, with an office in Tel Aviv, helps organizations safely embrace unmanaged and IoT devices throughout their business. Armis offers an agentless security solution that provides visibility of every device in the enterprise environment. It analyzes and classifies devices and their behavior in order to identify risks or attacks, and protects critical information and systems. Armis does not require any hardware and integrates seamlessly into any environment or existing infrastructure.

Insight is a global software investment firm.

Following the acquisition, Armis will continue to operate independently and will be fully managed by its two co-founders, Yevgeny Dibrov, CEO, and Nadir Izrael, CTO, and executive team, while leveraging the support of Insight's business strategy and ScaleUp division, Onsite.

"Insight is one of the most sophisticated software investors in the sector, and it is due to the depth of their domain expertise that they really understand the enterprise IoT device challenge we are looking to solve, and the size of the market opportunity. We considered growth rounds and strategic offers, but by partnering with Insight we have the best of both worlds - operational support and independence, both of which were important in our decision to take on a scaleup partner this early in our company journey," said Yevgeny Dibrov, co-founder and CEO at Armis.

"One of the biggest challenges keeping CIOs and CISOs up at night is how to secure the unmanaged devices proliferating through their businesses, from manufacturing floors to hospital rooms, from airports to boardrooms. These devices - capturing and creating business critical information, working on production lines, or administering patient care - have no protection and they need a security solution," said Nadir Izrael, CTO and co-founder at Armis. "The exponential growth of Armis to date illustrates just how critical securing unmanaged devices is for businesses. With the backing of Insight, we will continue to expand our world class technology to help identify devices, track their behavior and respond to the threats that target them."