Adelaide nanosatellite startup raises $19m to become global player in IoT
Written on the 27 March 2018 by Ben Hall
Nanosatellite startup Myriota has closed a $19.4 million Series A funding round with the backing five venture capital firms, making it the largest round announced globally to date for a tech startup using Space 2.0 for the internet of things (IoT).
Founded in Adelaide in 2015 as a spin-out from the University of South Australia, Myriota says its aim is to become the key communications network for the global IoT sector. This market is set to have 27 billion connected devices generating a revenue of US$3tn per annum by 2025.
With direct-to-orbit technology, Myriota enables massive scale, low-cost communications for IoT devices anywhere on the planet.
The round was led by Australian VC firms Blue Sky Venture Capital and Main Sequence Ventures and included Boeing HorizonX Ventures, Singtel Innov8 and Right Click Capital. It is the first investment outside the United States for Boeing HorizonX Ventures.
Myriota plans to accelerate its growth by launching more satellites, delivering revolutionary large-scale IoT deployments, and expanding its global operations.
New sales and customer support offices will be opened in North America and Asia, and the business expects to add at least 50 new staff, most of whom will be based at the startup's South Australian headquarters. The expansion follows the recent announcement that Myriota will open a $3 million Internet of Things Innovation Lab.
"The internet of things has a major connectivity problem: hundreds of millions of devices that need to communicate but don't have cost-effective, battery friendly networks to do so. Myriota solves this problem," Myriota CEO Dr Alex Grant (pictured) says.
"The fact we have managed to engage such a stellar list of investors doesn't just underline the quality of our tech and IP - it also gives us access to highly strategic resources and capabilities as we move to the next level."
Myriota is leading the development of a number of world-first Space 2.0 projects across a diverse ranges of sectors, including black box type recorders for Australian Army soldiers, water tank monitors for farmers, asset tracking and environmental monitoring.
Blue Sky's South Australian Venture Capital Fund Investment Director, Atlanta Daniel, says Blue Sky co-led this Series A round investment in Myriota and was proud to announce the investment as the first from the $50 million South Australian Venture Capital Fund.
"We've been impressed by Myriota's global outlook from day one. They're proof that South Australia has exceptional entrepreneurs and world-class technology companies looking for investment. Over the past few months we've worked hard alongside Myriota to help the team secure foreign direct investment from North America and Asia," Daniel says.
"We're excited to see this kind of global platform technology emerge from South Australia, where the team have effectively developed a new protocol for IoT communications, enabled by 'New Space' technology."
Boeing HorizonX VP Steve Nordlund, says that as his company's first investment outside of the US, it was an important move.
"The Myriota team channelled its telecommunications expertise to develop a solution that simultaneously connects hundreds of millions of low-cost, low-powered transmitters to satellites. This was a compelling investment for us because as a global company, Boeing recognises and supports the innovation occurring in Australia and beyond," Nordlund says.
Business News Australia
Author: Ben Hall