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IoT Startup of Former Reliance Jio CIO ‘Gaia Smart Cities’ Raises Pre-Series A Funding

Mumbai headquartered Gaia Smart Cities, an Internet of Things (IoT) startup building solutions for Smart Cities, has raised an undisclosed amount in pre series A funding from a clutch of global investors.

Investors who contributed to this round include Ranodeb Roy (CEO, RV Capital Management, Singapore; ex-Board Member of MakeMyTrip and current Board member of Bandhan Bank; an Early LP into Aavishkar Fund; Multiple startup investments) and Raja Shekhar Reddy (Founder at BizSR – a startup incubator-accelerator, Founder & former COO, Innovsource; Investor-mentor in several startups) – both alumnus of IIT-Kanpur and IIM-Ahmedabad – and a clutch of investors led by Debasish Das (Analytics and Data Science Head of Wipro’s Knowledge Services).

The startup will use the freshly raised funds to accelerate business development and market growth in India as well as in European markets and also for expanding the team for further innovation and product development of Gaia’s proprietary Edge ML hardware and Cloud Based analytics platforms.

Gaia was founded in 2015 by a former CIO at Reliance Jio and Ex-VP at IBM, Sumit D. Chowdhury, along with Bipin Pradeep Kumar who is an Ex-Chairman of Smart City Work Group under Ministry of Communication & IT, India.

Gaia, which is creating a public Network as a Service (NaaS) in India for low-cost/long-range IoT applications, has been supported by prominent angel investors in its previous round of funding in which several seasoned IoT and tech experts have had contributed to its fund.

Investors of Gaia’s past round of funding include Mehul Shah (Product Marketing Leader, Sprint IoT Group; Ex Honeywell IoT Group), Deepak Das (Chief Director of Engineering, Federated Wireless), Kavita Ravi (Director Emerging Markets, Massachusetts Department of Clean Energy) and Devang Mehta (now Partner at Anthill Ventures).

Gaia’s distribution setup are in India, it however has signed channel partnership agreements in Spain, UK, Netherlands and Australia in 2018, and is actively connecting with clients in overseas markets.

The startup claims to have captured over 50+ Million unique, discrete feedbacks from users and over 150 Million streaming feedbacks from sensors. They have been deployed in over 130 cities across India for over 60 clients.

A provider of Wide-area IoT and AI/ML enabled Smart Feedback solutions, Gaia had earlier acquired the IoT division of netCORE Solutions, in June 2016 when netCORE had also invested in Gaia.

Currently, clients of Gaia are all based out of India and are across industry segments including Transport, Retail, Facilities, Real Estate, Cold Chains, and many Smart Cities across India. Current customers include Amul, Paras Dairy, ACC, TheMobileStore and Central Electronics Limited, a Government of India-owned engineering company.

Notably, the startup is also working with the Ministry of Urban Development (MoUD) as an integral part of the National Project Management Unit (PMU) of the Swachh Bharat Mission (SBM) and Smart water metering solution for Delhi.

It may also be recalled that earlier this month, an another IoT-based startup, DeTect Technologies, had raised $3.3 million in Series A round of funding led by SAIF Partners and contributed by CIIE-IIM Ahmedabad’s Bharat Innovation Fund, Axilor Ventures, BlueHill Capital Pvt Ltd and a few angels from the Keiretsu Forum.

In September, CRON Systems, a Delhi-based defence IoT startup, had signed an MoU for a strategic collaboration with Silicon Valley-based Quanergy Systems Inc., a global leader in the design and development of light detection and ranging (LiDAR) sensors and smart sensing solutions.

In May this year, Hero Electronix, an emerging tech unit of Hero Group, acquired Zenatix, a Gurgaon-based enterprise IoT startup, and with this acquisition Hero made its foray into the Internet-of-things (IoT) space. The acquisition had allowed VC firms like Blume Ventures and Pi Ventures to make a decent exit from the startup.

Source: IndianWeb2

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