Munich Venture Partners led an $11 million Series A funding round in
relayr, an internet-of-things developer in Berlin, Germany. Other investors in the funding round included
Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers,
Josef Brunner, seed investor and CEO of relayr and
Tom Noonan, co-founder of energy management company
On November 4, 2015 relayr, the Internet-of-Things (IoT) provider headquartered in Berlin, successfully closed a 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. Kleiner Perkins is a significant investor in several major Internet companies like Google and Amazon as well as companies like Nest Labs, which was acquired by Google last year. Munich Venture Partners, a Munich based investor specialising in high tech start-ups, was leading the round.
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 is one of the first vendors to quickly and easily connect 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 already 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. Working closely with Josef Brunner to head the relayr management team is founder and Internet expert Harald Zapp (COO).
“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.
Founded in April 2013 in Berlin, relayr delivers software, hardware and, consulting services to help companies meet the challenges of industrial digitization. The company has developed the WunderBar, a hardware sensor kit that contains a collection of freely programmable sensors, metering and transmission modules for further use in virtually all technical equipment. To give developers the ability to simply and quickly program these sensors, relayr offers an open source Software Development Kit (SDK). Because the SDK is open source, it encourages and enables continuous improvement and integration with hardware and services from companies like Cisco, Salesforce.com, or SAP.
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.
About Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB)
Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) partners with the brightest entrepreneurs to turn disruptive ideas into world-changing businesses. The firm has helped build pioneering companies like Amazon, Electronic Arts, Genentech, Google, Nest, Netscape, and Twitter. KPCB offers entrepreneurs years of operating experience, puts them at the center of a vast and influential network, and accelerates their success through expertise and support in recruiting, product design and delivery, business development, strategic partnerships, and brand building. KPCB invests in all stages from seed and incubation to growth companies and operates from offices in Menlo Park, San Francisco, Shanghai, and Beijing. For more information, visit https://www.kpcb.com and follow us @kpcb.
About Munich Venture Partners
Munich Venture Partners is a Venture Capital firm managed by senior managers from the high technology and energy industry, and experienced Venture Capital professionals. As the prime partner of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, one of the world’s leading research organizations for applied research, Munich Venture Partners is investing in selected high-tech start-ups in the environmental technology and energy sector. Munich Venture Partners is in part funded by the European Union and its Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP).