Cisco invests in Internet of Things platform provider Kii
Two Internet of Things startups backed by Cisco and Intel recently received new investments
Cisco Investments is making an undisclosed investment in Internet of Things (IoT) platform provider Kii, which will use the funds to expand distribution, including with carriers. Separately, Arrayent, which provides its platform to well-known brands like Whirlpool and Maytag, completed a $15 million Series C funding round as ORIX Ventures joined previous investors that include Intel Capital, DCM Ventures, Opus Capital and Comerica Bank.
Kii is working with carriers worldwide, including DoCoMo in Japan, although it is not naming any U.S. carriers, according to Chief Product Officer Phani Pandrangi. The company, which is headquartered in Japan and has offices in San Mateo, Calif., worked with Brightstar – now a Softbank company that was founded by Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure – to create Space, an open IoT ecosystem supporting the development and distribution of IoT products into the retail and mobile carrier channels.
Given Cisco's focus on the Internet of Everything, it's a great affirmation for Kii, which employs about 75 people. "It's basically like an endorsement of what we've been up to and shows Cisco's commitment in us," Pandrangi said. "Having Cisco on our side provides us an opportunity to kind of do bigger things and go even more global."