Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

$17.2m funding helps Bit Stew expand into oil and gas industries

Steve Rogerson
June 2, 2015
 
Canadian start-up Bit Stew Systems has raised an additional US$17.2m series B funding to let it push its software-defined industrial internet operations into the oil and gas and distributed energy industries. The investment round, led by GE Ventures, includes existing investors Cisco Investments and Yaletown Venture Partners, and brings new investment from BDC Capital and others.
 
The additional funding from leaders in the industrial internet continues a year of on-going technology innovation, revenue growth and customer adoption, new market opportunities and recognition for Bit Stew Systems and its software.
 
“Securing significant investments from technology giants GE and Cisco supports our market-leading technology and will allow us to scale our business into new industries and additional geographic markets,” said Kevin Collins, CEO of Bit Stew Systems. “Our investors recognise how Bit Stew’s Mix Coreplatform improves operations by minimising the complexity of managing massive data sets in industrial environments.”
 
The Mix products can turn massive industrial data sets into data-driven automation for better operational efficiency, improved asset performance and more uptime. The Mix Core platform is the culmination of industry-hardened machine learning derived from trillions of data points analysed throughout the utility industry and now oil and gas. Purpose-built for the industrial internet, on a daily basis, it processes and analyses greater volumes of data than most of the world’s largest social networks, claims the company.
 
Mix Director, powered by the data management capabilities of Mix Core, turns data into actionable insights for operators who can supplement its capabilities by adding Mix Apps, which solve specific use cases using data analytics and visualisations.
 
“Our investment in Bit Stew Systems reflects our belief in the tremendous potential for their technology to unlock the value of the industrial internet and to make an immediate impact through new efficiencies and operational improvements,” said Brett May, head of ventures and business development at GE Software. “We have closely monitored Bit Stew’s success in the utilities sector and their growth into oil and gas markets. We are pleased to support them as they press their advantage to expand their promise and innovation into new markets.”
 
Over the past year, Bit Stew introduced the Mix Core 8.0 platform, which automates the data ingestion process in industrial environments, removing the complexity of operations and connected machines and giving unprecedented insight and control back to the operator. It released Mix Director 0 (formerly known as Grid Director), built upon the Mix Core platform to drive operating efficiencies, optimise asset reliability, reduce lost revenue and improve customer satisfaction.
 
The company has also added four large west coast utilities, including PG&E, to its roster of top customers in the industry and announced a partnership with RoviSys that brings the power of Bit Stew technology to the upstream and midstream oil and gas markets.
 
“We are excited to continue our close collaboration with Bit Stew, a visionary company that is bringing next-generation technologies and disruptive business models to industrial markets,” said Rob Salvagno, vice president for corporate development at Cisco. “As an investor and partner, we are bringing together internet of things solutions that are solving our joint customers’ most challenging problems.”
 
Collins added: “We’re pleased to have secured this significant investment in our series B round of funding and plan to use the capital to grow the company by expanding into additional industrial markets. Building on our proven success in the utilities sector, we recently announced our entry into the oil and gas sector and are excited to expand into new markets. This additional funding will allow us to pursue these new opportunities with increasing vigour.”
 
Incorporated in 2009, Bit Stew is a venture-backed private company that is headquartered in Canada with offices in the USA, Australia and Europe. It was recently added to Greentech Media’s Grid Edge 20 list, as one of the top 20 innovators architecting the future of the electric power industry. In 2014, Bit Stew was also recognised on the Gartner Cool Vendors in Energy & Utilities list and as the Frost & Sullivan Entrepreneurial Company of the Year – North American Service Solutions for Utilities.