Bengaluru-based robot maker Invento Makerspaces has raised its second seed investment round from Mumbai-based ITI Growth Fund, Pune-based Windrose Capital and a few other unnamed domain investors.
ITI Growth led the round with an infusion of $1,40,522 in the round, a company spokesperson told TechCircle.
Invento Makerspaces plans to use the capital for research and development (R&D) in building and innovating new robot variants, business expansion into new industries and verticals, the statement added.
The company is the maker of ‘Mitra,’ a robot that greeted Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the United States’ President Donald Trump’s daughter Ivanka Trump at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit at Hyderabad in 2017.
‘Mitra,’ a Hindi word that translates to a friend, is a humanoid robot. The company claims the robot helps sector-agnostic brands in improving physical customer experience and access.
The robot is deployed in varying capacities with about 50 different companies such as HDFC, Accenture, Suzuki, Morris Garages, General Motors, Zomato, PVR amongst its notable clients.
‘Mitra’ also has a female counterpart called ‘Mitri.’
This is the second seed stage investment at Invento Makerspaces. It had first scored an undisclosed seed raise, after participating in Horses Stable, the Indian adaptation of American television show Shark Tank, in September 2019.
The Mitra-maker was founded by Balaji Viswanathan in Bengaluru along with two other co-founders with extensive experience in robotics, consulting, R&D and management.
“The robot (Mitra) is designed to interact with humans using facial and speech recognition contextual help and autonomous navigation. It is capable of seamless autonomous movement and obstacle detection, along with speech synthesis in regional Asian languages like Hindi, Tamil, and Sinhalese. The company is looking to launch subsequent variants of robots for applications in different industries and operating verticals,” the statement read.
‘Mitra 2’ was launched by Modi at GES 2017, while the more advanced ‘Mitra 3’ was recently unveiled this year at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
“Companies like Invento which practice a culture of innovation, will spearhead India’s economic transformation. Invento is a pioneer of commercial and economically viable Humanoid Robotics in India, and its product ‘Mitra’ will be a game changer in the way big brands interact and service their clients,” Rohit Goyal a managing partner at Windrose Capital said in the statement.
This development marks the latest investment by Windrose Capital’s maiden fund ‘The Next Billion Fund,’ which it closed in November 2019 with a final target corpus of $30 million.
‘The Next Billion Fund’ is a SEBI (Securities Exchange Board of India) registered category 1 AIF (alternative investment fund) or venture capital fund.