SwitchOn, an Edge-AI enabled Industrial IoT company, today announced that it has raised $1 mn in seed round of funding led by pi Ventures, India’s first Applied Artificial Intelligence, IoT and Blockchain focused early stage venture fund. Along with pi, Axilor and eminent angels from The Chennai Angels have also participated in the round.

Founded by Aniruddha Banerjee and Avra Banerjee in 2017, SwitchOn is an Industrial tech company that helps manufacturing industries identify plant-level bottlenecks and improve equipment efficiency. Industries can create digital twins of their heavy assets, monitor and predict availability and performance bottlenecks in advance, thus ensuring better Efficiency for the Equipment as well as the Plant.

The Company graduated from the Axilor Accelerator Program in 2018. The Automotive and FMCG Discrete Manufacturing are the key industries that SwitchOn has seen significant traction in both India and APAC markets. The fresh funds will be used for strengthening the edge-compute architecture, expanding the team and market adoption in India and other countries in the EU and APAC region.

Aniruddha Banerjee, Co-Founder, SwitchOn said, “SwitchOn is leveraging deep expertise in hardware and software design to create state-of-the-art edge solutions for increasing transparency, reducing turn-around, and improving quality on the shop-floor of manufacturing industries to ultimately achieve operational excellence. We are very excited about the new investment and the deep expertise of our investors in scaling IP-led hardware-software businesses. We believe that our customers will benefit heavily from our expanded global footprint and deep technology differentiators."

SwitchOn has a proprietary set of algorithms which combines vibration data, electrical data and other signals to give accurate and relevant Digital Twin of the machine. This leads to a variety of outcomes for their clients across the globe - from transparency of the operations to increasing the availability of the machine to predictive maintenance. SwitchOn has their own hardware which attaches on top of the machine (non-intrusive) along with the ability to carry out complex number crunching. The implementation of their technology reduces the need to transfer gigabytes of data to the cloud thus saving valuable dollars and achieve a faster turnaround on the insights. The solution is implemented very simply - it almost attaches itself like fitbit and does not need a deep integration.

[caption id="attachment_131236" align="alignright" width="259"] Manish Singhal, Founding Partner at pi Ventures[/caption]

Manish Singhal, Founding Partner, pi Ventures, added, “What attracted us to invest in them was their clear understanding of the technology and customer needs. Another winning point was their minimally intrusive solution, the need of the hour in the Industrial IoT space. We are happy to partner with a brilliant team working hard at addressing a crucial need."

SwitchOn with their solution are well poised to be a dominant player in the Industrial IoT space which is expected to be >$200B by 2023. Industrial operations for a large part are still highly manual with only 8% of the pre-existing sensors in the machines are connected to the internet. With ample opportunity and need to automate various aspects of a machine to achieve a reduction in downtime, improve operational efficiency and maximize asset utilization, the industrial IoT market is set to advance rapidly.

Last week, an another Industrial IoT startup Sparkyo Technology Pvt. Ltd., which owns and operates Syook, a real-time location intelligence System, had raised an undisclosed amount in funding from Inflection Point Ventures (IPV), an early stage investing platform and a sub-initiative of CXO Genie.

Before that, Pune-based Altizon Inc, which is also an Industrial IoT platform addressing the manufacturing industries, had closed its series A+ funding round of $7 million led by TVS Motor Company (Singapore) Pte. Limited, the Singapore based Subsidiary of TVS Motor.

pi Ventures is India’s first Applied Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, IoT and Blockchain focused early stage venture fund. pi is a $33 Million fund based in Bangalore, India, and invests around $1 million per startup. pi Ventures focuses on healthcare, logistics, retail, fin-tech and enterprise sectors. Backed by some of the leading entrepreneurs globally, pi Ventures brings hands-on product and entrepreneurial experience to the India venture investing ecosystem.

In April, pi Ventures had invested in Bengaluru-based ten3T Healthcare, a health technology startup that has commercialized patented technology for the early detection and prevention of medical episodes to patients in hospitals, during transport, and at home. Prior to that, pi led the $4.2 million seed round of FrontdeskAI, a developer of artificial intelligence assistants for small businesses.

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