In the few months since its launch in late 2013, major bottling and packaging companies in Europe and North America have rushed to deploy Smart Skin Technologies’ Quantifeel™ DRONE, an industry-first hardware and software solution to measure pressure and ensure efficient production.
Today the company announced a $3.9 million Series A investment to accelerate product development and service more customers. Rho Canada Ventures, Build Ventures and GrowthWorks Atlantic Venture Fund led the investment round. Earlier investors, including East Valley Ventures, the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation and other angel investors, also participated in this round of funding.
Smart Skin’s patented solution measures pressure through an artificial touch-sensitive film, or “skin,” providing large-scale operators with precise, real-time measurement on the production line for the first time. As part of the rapidly evolving “Industrial Internet,” this new technology and analytical capability has already been embraced by six of the top 10 beer brands in world, with other top food producers and packaging and container companies deploying it as well.
"We’ve experienced strong customer traction since our launch late last year," said Smart Skin Technologies founder and CEO Kumaran Thillainadarajah. "We have a powerful solution to a problem plaguing bottling and packaging companies that will save them millions of dollars each year. Our product is already deployed on factory floors around the world and with this new round of funding partners, we have the fuel to continue our growth and develop new products."
Based in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada, Smart Skin Technologies was founded in 2009. It previously raised $1.5 million from New Brunswick-based investors. The Canadian Innovation Exchange (CIX) named Smart Skin Technologies to its 2013 CIX Top 20.
"With its proven technology and strong leadership team, Smart Skin Technologies has quickly achieved significant customer traction with top global corporations. It also has the opportunity to extend its technology into many other industries. With funding and support from this round of investors, Smart Skin Technologies can expand its sales and marketing presence to quickly dominate a large and growing market. We see a bright future ahead," said Jeff Grammer, partner with Rho Canada Ventures.
About Smart SkinTechnologies
Based in Fredericton, Canada, Smart Skin Technologies' hardware and software solution provides bottling and packaging companies with precise, real-time measurement of pressure on production lines. This innovative technology has application across a wide range of industries. Companies in Europe and North America have deployed Smart Skin products in their operations. The Canadian Innovation Exchange (CIX) named the company to its 2013 CIX Top 20. For more information visit WWW.SMARTSKINTECH.COM or follow @SMARTSKINTECH on Twitter.
About Build Ventures
Build Ventures manages a $50 million venture capital fund that concentrates on Series A investments. These are investments in early stage companies that have an established business model, a solid team, a large target market, and some revenue generation, and now need ramp-up capital. The focus is on companies in information technology, clean technology, life sciences and other high-growth sectors. *Note: Innovacorp is a founding investor of Build Ventures.
About East Valley Ventures
East Valley Ventures is a community of entrepreneurs providing mentorship and financing to early stage technology companies in Atlantic Canada. East Valley Ventures’ portfolio has included Mariner Partners, Radian6, Q1 Labs and Brovada, among dozens of others. To find out more, visit WWW.EASTVALLEYVENTURES.COM or follow@EASTVALLEYVENT on Twitter.
GrowthWorks™ managed funds provide investment capital for Canadian companies and tax-advantaged investment opportunities for Canadian investors. Through the Working Opportunity Fund (EVCC) Ltd., GrowthWorks Atlantic Venture Fund Ltd. and GrowthWorks Commercialization Fund Ltd. GrowthWorks identifies, analyzes and structures investments in companies with high growth potential. Particular emphasis is placed on IT, life sciences and cleantech sectors. Building on more than 20 years of investment expertise, GrowthWorks is a leader in Canadian venture capital management. GrowthWorks is a registered trademark of GrowthWorks Capital Ltd.
About New Brunswick Innovation Foundation
The New Brunswick Innovation Foundation is an independent, not-for-profit corporation that makes venture capital investments in start-up companies; funds applied research at New Brunswick research organizations, and provides innovation vouchers for established businesses. The financial returns earned go back into the foundation to be re-invested into even more start-up companies and applied research.
About Rho Canada Ventures
Rho Canada Ventures is affiliated with Rho Capital Partners focusing on early-stage investing in Canada’s most innovative technology companies. The Rho Canada Ventures team comprises a unique combination of entrepreneurial, operational and venture investment experience in the United States and Canada. With a combined 80 years of experience, we offer entrepreneurs the expertise to turn Canadian innovators into global leaders. Rho Canada Ventures’ portfolio companies are a diverse group of investments that span new media, mobile applications, wireless infrastructure, semiconductors & materials, and software (including SaaS). For more information, visitWWW.RHOCANADA.COM or follow on Twitter @RHOCANADA.
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January 16, 2014, Fredericton, New Brunswick