On November 4, 2015 iThings4U GmbH (dba relayr), the Internet-of-Things (IoT) provider headquartered in Berlin, announced the closing of its Series-A financing round of more than $11 million USD. The primary investor is Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, one of the largest and most successful venture capital firms in Silicon Valley. Munich Venture Partners, a Munich based investor specializing in high tech start-ups, was leading the round.
iThing4U GmbH offers a platform that provides application developers with tools to create applications and services connected to the Internet of Things. iTings4U is based in Berlin, Germany.
Josef Brunner, seed investor and now CEO of relayr, renewed his commitment with further investment in this round. Another private investor is Tom Noonan, who co-founded energy management company JouleX (acquired by Cisco in 2013) with Josef Brunner.
relayr connects the physical world with the virtual world. With its end-to-end development solution consisting of the relayr IoT-Cloud platform, a software development kit, and a sensor kit, relayr addressed the central challenge of the Internet of Things: to digitize physical objects. Founded in 2013, relayr counts Bosch Siemens Hausgeräte, Cisco and the City of Paris among its customers.
The aim of this round of financing is to rapidly advance the IoT technology platform to support companies in digitally transforming their business processes. The other focus areas of relayr’s management are to launch relayr’s B2B business in the US market and expand their partner ecosystem.
“I am proud that we are working with those investors who have already helped to shape successful growth stories of Internet companies for many years. That these investors have chosen to back relayr reinforces that we are an important player in the development of the nascent market for the Internet of Things”, explains Josef Brunner.
“The Internet of Things needs an interoperable technology platform that drives new applications and data relationships quickly. It motivates me even more that relayr found its starting point in Germany and, in less than two years, has convinced the technology experts in the USA that Industry 4.0 will shape future projects, especially in Europe”, Harald Zapp says, looking back on the original German start-up.
“We have seen the great successes of consumer IoT companies in Nest and Dropcam that have vertical solutions spanning from device to cloud. However the enterprise and industrial IoT market will be much larger and requires a different approach. Enterprises and Industrials can’t start from a clean slate; they will need to integrate existing devices and systems from a myriad of vendors. For that, they will need a robust and flexible platform, complemented by an experienced team to help customers being their IoT journey. We found exactly that in relayr”, Wen Hsieh explained from the venture team of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.
“IoT will impact all industries; changing production processes, tightening supply chains, and enabling new services and business models. relayr is the European market leader in this upcoming industrial IoT space, and its customer base of large industrial corporations and its existing partnerships with leading technology providers and consultancies are a solid foundation for expanding its IoT capabilities on a global scale”, says Walter Grassl of Munich Venture Partners.
relayr is a winner of the Cisco IoT Challenge in October 2014, of the Focus Digital Star Award in January 2015, of the CeBIT CODE_n Awards in March 2015 and of the FINAKI IT Innovation Awards in June 2015.