IoT Startup Skylo Raises $103 Mn From Consortium Led By SoftBank

NB-IoT startup Skylo Tuesday announced that it has raised $103 million in a Series A round from a consortium of investors led by SoftBank. Earlier the firm has raised $13 million from DCM and Innovation Endeavors, and joined by Moore Strategic Ventures. With the new series the firm totals an investment of $116 million and emerges from its stealth mode.

Skylo claims it will bring instant, affordable and ubiquitous Internet of Things connectivity to millions of machines, sensors and devices, even in the most remote geographies. It is the world’s first company to leverage 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. Skylo’s new satellite connectivity leverages existing geostationary satellites to bring reliable connectivity without the need to add new infrastructure in space. Skylo has successfully built and proven its end-to-end technology and completed successful commercial field trials with major enterprise and government customers. The company’s customers already include enterprise and government entities in a range of industries including automotive, railways, agriculture and maritime.

Skylo costs 95% less than existing satellite solutions, with connectivity starting at just $1 per user and hardware that costs less than $100. Skylo is the world’s most affordable satellite technology and will enable operations for remote businesses, increase safety, drive economic development and job creation, and help with disaster preparedness and response.

“Skylo envisions a world where connectivity for machines, sensors and devices is as ubiquitous as the sky,” said Skylo co-founder and CEO Parthsarathi “Parth” Trivedi. “This low-cost, global fabric of connectivity for machine data will be transformative for entire industries.”

“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.”

Skylo was founded in 2017 by CEO Parth Trivedi, Chief Technology Officer Dr. Andrew Nuttall and Chief Hub Architect Dr. Andrew Kalman. The company’s current Board of Directors includes Board Chairman former U.S. Ambassador Terry Kramer, David Chao of DCM, Scott Brady of Innovation Endeavors, Harpinder “Harpi” Singh of Innovation Endeavors, and Skylo CEO Trivedi. Skylo has offices in San Mateo, Calif., Bangalore, India, and Tel Aviv, Israel, and is growing the team globally to support its fast-growing customer base.

Skylo said it will scale customer implementations first in India and other emerging markets, where it has already started implementing the technology in a range of industries. Skylo’s service will be commercially available later this summer and the company is in commercial trials with users in the U.S. and other world regions for subsequent launches and market expansion.

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