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Indian origin entrepreneur’s firm Skylo raises $103 million led by Softbank

Internet of Things (IoT) solutions firm Skylo Technologies has raised $103 million in a new Series B round led by SoftBank Group, joined by its existing investors.

Skylo said on Tuesday that the California-based company, which has an office in Bengaluru, has emerged from stealth mode with $116 million in total funding.

Skylo had raised $13 million in the Series A round that was co-led by DCM and Innovation Endeavors, and joined by Moore Strategic Ventures.

Skylo was founded in 2017 by Parthsarathi Trivedi, of Indian origin, along with Dr Andrew Nuttall and Dr Andrew Kalman. It has offices in San Mateo, Bengaluru and Tel Aviv.

Skylo offers real-time IoT connectivity to millions of machines, sensors and devices across industries such as agriculture, fishing, railways, logistics and utilities infrastructure. The Skylo Network is hosted on existing geostationary satellites. The company leverages 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, the statement added.

Skylo’s customers include enterprise and government entities in industries such as automotive, railways, agriculture and maritime. The company recently built and deployed a solution for the Indian Railways.

“Skylo envisions a world where connectivity for machines, sensors and devices is as ubiquitous as the sky,” Skylo co-founder and CEO Trivedi said in a statement.

“This low-cost, global fabric of connectivity for machine data will be transformative for entire industries.”

The statement added that Skylo costs 95% less than existing satellite solutions, with connectivity starting at $1 per user and hardware that costs less than $100.

“Skylo’s satellite technology creates an affordable way to connect more of the physical world to the internet, even in remote areas,” said Yoshi Segawa, vice president at SoftBank Group International.

“Skylo’s antenna technology and use of the narrowband internet of things protocol is revolutionary, and we look forward to working with the company in developing new use cases,” he said.

Skylo will scale customer implementations first in India and other emerging markets. The startup’s service will be commercially available later this summer and the company is in commercial trials with users in the US and other parts of the world, it said.

Source: Livemint