Office Hours: Techstars IoT (San Francisco)

Who: Startups looking to apply to the Techstars IoT Accelerator

What: Office hours

When: April 3-5

Where: San Francisco

Details: Click here to register for office hours!

Info Session: Techstars IoT (Boston/MIT)

Who: Startups looking to apply to Techstars IoT

What: Info Session

When: March 14

Where: Boston/MIT

Details: Click here to register for the event!

Live Webinar: Techstars IoT (Online)

By 2025, IoT’s yearly economic impact will be more than $10 trillion. Where will we see the majority of that impact? Industries and commercial enterprise.

To tap into this enormous opportunity, Techstars IoT aims to build a new ecosystem for IoT entrepreneurs with a B2B focus.

While IoT is an exciting space with limitless opportunity, we are still early in that there is no real standardization or infrastructure that benefits everyone.

This is why we partnered with GE, Verizon, PwC, Bosch and SAP, and Siemens, to provide a common ground for these industries to come together and help startups innovate.

Come join the webinar to hear about how you can participate, as a startup, in the IoT program in NYC.

Click here to register!

The Sky is the Limit in Enterprise IoT

The opportunities in enterprise IoT are limitless. From operational cost savings, to collecting and analyzing data in real-time, IoT provides impactful and sustained value creation. If consumer IoT is big, enterprise and industrial IoT has the potential to morph consumer as legacy players like GE, Siemens and Verizon create society’s infrastructure. From industry 4.0 to energy, smart cities to healthcare, mobility to construction to wireless infrastructure, the verticals that IoT are transforming are limitless. But how?

Last year was an incredible one for IoT with several billion dollar acquisitions of IoT companies by large corporates. In fact, IoT drove a significant percentage of the total M&A activity in tech.

Big players like Verizon, SAP and GE have been gunning to expand their data and analytics capabilities in an effort to monetize their huge data sets. The number of notable IoT acquisition deals has been steadily increasing since 2013, a time when there were only six deals averaging $100M each. And by 2016, there were over 50 IoT acquisitions valued close to $1B each.

The increase in trend signifies IoT’s inevitable dominance in the M&A landscape in the coming years.

So does this mean that the corporates have settled on a buy vs build model? We have seen corporate ventures funds at an all time high coupled with new corporate accelerators like Techstars IoT in partnership with GE, SAP, Bosch, PwC, Verizon and UrbanX in partnership with BMW / Mini among others. But as we know, the challenges with investments and acquisitions lie in the delicate art of integrating with key business units.

Legacy companies must grapple with structural integration without killing a startup’s agile development and culture, while simultaneously protecting its own integrity and objectives.

A handful of our very own corporate partners at Techstars have made several significant acquisitions in the past year. Verizon had a busy year, buying Telogis in June (estimated at $930M), Fleetmatics in August for $2.4B and Sensity Systems in September, and LQD WiFi in November. GE was also busy acquiring Meridium for $495M, BitStew Systems for $207M, as well as

SAP’s acquisition of Plat.One in October was another noteworthy deal that bolstered SAP’s existing software network with an enterprise-grade IoT solution. These deals as well as corporate partnerships with accelerators indicate an obvious demand for enterprise IoT adoption; it’s only a matter of time before other legacy players begin to catch on since the opportunities to facilitate growth and maintain a competitive edge are in plain sight.

Applications for Techstars IoT are open. Apply today.

Investing in IoT is a Bumpy Ride

Navigating investment climates is tough. It’s even tougher in IoT– especially when the tides change so quickly and without much warning. For the past few years, IoT has been on everyone’s hot list, but the good times may be slowing down. And according to CB Insights, corporate venture arms, which represent 5 out of the top 12 major investors in IoT, may also be scaling back funding.

Personally, I don’t buy it. Not a day goes by where a CVC does not reach out to me about our new IoT class. Seems like the money is still flowing in corporate land!

Here’s a look at where Techstars has been investing in IoT:




Presenting Techstars IoT Class of 2016

Rewiring Legacy Industries and Creating the IoT Universe

By 2025, IoT’s yearly economic impact will be more than $10 trillion. Where will we see the majority of that impact? Industries and commercial enterprise.

To tap into this enormous opportunity, Techstars IoT aims to build a new ecosystem for IoT entrepreneurs with a B2B focus.

“While IoT is an exciting space with limitless opportunity, we are still early in that there is no real standardization or infrastructure that benefits everyone.” says Jenny Fielding, the Managing Director of Techstars. “This is why we partnered with GE, Verizon, PwC, Bosch and SAP, to provide a common ground for these industries to come together and help startups innovate.”

The 10 startups selected are rewiring legacy industries and enabling meaningful innovation through IoT. From healthcare to construction, we are proud to announce the future innovators of the B2B space.

Meet this year’s class:



Dronesmith Technologies enables developers to build, ship, and run drone applications easily by providing an open platform that simplifies cloud connectivity and scalability.


Nanotech Galaxy

Nanotech Galaxy uses deep learning to analyze medical images and empower healthcare organisations with predictive analytics.


Urban 3D

Urban 3D is automating and digitizing the construction industry using robotics, advanced manufacturing, and material science.


Pillar Technologies

Pillar prevents damages on construction sites using sensors and predictive analytics.



Fueloyal developes a smart fuel cap that prevents fuel theft and fuel card misuse in the trucking industry.


TEQ Charging

TEQ Charging is increasing the accessibility and affordability of charging infrastructure for electric vehicles (EVs).


Mosaic Manufacturing

Mosaic Manufacturing develops multi-color material desktop printing technologies.


Union Crate

Union Crate is a predictive solution that digitizes the outdated supply chain infrastructure.


Xapix is a developer portal that makes it easy for enterprises to distribute data and services into an ecosystem of applications through a single point of contact.



Losant provides an Internet of Things solution platform that allows developers to build complex, connected solutions quickly and easily.

The Latest Trends and Themes of Industrial IoT

Techstars recently launched a new Internet of Things program in partnership with GE, PwC, Verizon, SAP and Bosch. We are not new to the IoT space, however, having invested in over 70 IoT companies across the Techstars portfolio. With an unprecedented number of IoT applications to the upcoming program, we looked at the data and uncovered trends and insights about startups innovating around IoT.

In 2016 we saw almost a 2X increase in the total number of IoT applications from our last IoT program in 2014. To put this into perspective, IoT applications rivaled those of our other huge verticals such as Healthcare, Fintech and Retail – indicating the strength and continued momentum of IoT. And considering the fact that the latest IoT program only focused on business and industrial companies, we would have received significantly more applications had we included consumer IoT as well.

But trust me, we didn’t just open up applications and hope for the best… we spent a great deal of time from April through June meeting with startups around the globe:

  • Over 1400 people attended our information sessions.
  • Our team visited 25 cities including Berlin, Reykjavik, Taiwan, Helsinki…
  • We met individually with over 150 startups.

Total Application Data:

Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 3.23.07 PM Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 3.23.15 PM

Geographic Breakdown:

Screen Shot 2016-08-11 at 3.19.33 PM

Some Takeaways from the Data:

  • Startups continue to pursue software platforms likely motivated in part by the general frustration and disappointment with standardization and interoperability.
  • Health is still an area of interest but in forms other than Wearables. We saw a number of exciting medical devices and room sensors for monitoring patient behavior.
  • Cleantech has found new life in IoT! Although the vertical has been out of favor with investors for the past decade, repackaging ‘Cleantech’ as ‘IoT’ may be the facelift it needs.
  • IoT on the construction sites is top of mind. First we saw various SaaS solutions working to solve human efficiently. Now, sensors have been added to the mix to track facility progress, worker safety etc.
  • Significant decline in the number of drone applications indicates that the unfriendly regulatory environment provides massive friction for drone innovators.
  • Logistics and supply chain startups seem to be using off-the-shelf hardware and instead focusing on data aggregation and dashboards and basic machine learning.
  • Geographically, there is a huge presence of Industrial IoT companies in parts of Europe (Munich, Germany; Paris, France), although the majority of the applications came from the U.S given our recruiting activities this time around.
  • The promise of VR continues to attract passionate founders. No longer just about games, VR startup founders are increasingly technical and trying to solve next generation media issues.
  • Throw some AI / ML on it to make it sexy. Loads of bot applications that teeter on the edge of IoT.
  • Security was underrepresented in our application pool. Either because we weren’t good at identifying those startups or because there aren’t enough of them. This is a HUGE untapped opportunity.

One Final Note on Diversity:

Although tracking most types of founder diversity requires more thorough research and verified data, our applications indicate that of our top 50 applications, 13 contain a female founder and 24 have at least one non-white male co-founder.

On September 28 we will announce the newest class of Techstars IoT. Stay tuned for that!

Editions Month Industry Highlight: Internet of Things

The revolution of the Internet of Things (IoT) has already started. All the smart devices in your home, sensored and app loaded objects in your life are all part of the IoT. From home and personal use to industrial focus, the industry has risen even more powerfully during the past decade.


We recently launched applications for the Techstars IoT Accelerator, located in NYC at Barclays Rise, which brings a focus on the “Industrial Internet” and connecting the infrastructure of business and industry. The accelerator unites IoT industry leaders with a select group of the most innovative emerging startups for a 15 week, mentorship-driven program.

As Editions Month happens, organizers around the world are creating opportunities for participants to attend IoT focused events. Today, we’re highlighting Startup Weekend Denver (USA) and Startup Weekend Florianópolis (Brazil).

What are you most excited about for your upcoming event?

Denver Team: We are extremely excited to put on an amazing event for the participants. We want to provide them with as many resources as possible so they can learn helpful skills, meet great people, build the local startup community, and above all, startup some great companies.

Florianópolis Team: The Startup Weekend Florianópolis Internet of Things will be the very first Startup  Weekend about this theme in Brazil, so we are very excited to make it unforgettable. It will be the opportunity to strengthen entrepreneurship in the region, bring the relationship with the maker community closer and bring more knowledge about Internet of Things. We want to show that everybody can create and connect multiple devices to the internet during the 54 hours event.  We are already sold out and we are working to bring many activities and surprises for the participants.

What makes this Edition interesting?

Denver Team: This Internet of Things edition of Startup Weekend will provide participants with some surprising insights into the coming “Third Wave” of the Internet. We’re excited to see what these entrepreneurs create over this weekend and how they use internet technologies to interact with physical devices.

Florianópolis Team: The Internet of Things is a booming market and promises to move more than $7 trillion USD over the next three years and we will have a fully dedicated edition to develop startups focused in IoT. We will have the presence of highly qualified mentors and judges to help in the development of the ideas and we are sure that it will be a success. Moreover, Florianópolis is consolidating as a global technology hub. Currently, the city has about 600 software companies, hardware and technology services, which generate about five thousand direct jobs. There is no better place to receive the first Startup Weekend IoT in Brazil.

Organizing team members:

Denver Team

Denver's Team 1

Denver's Team 2

Denver's Team 3

Florianópolis Team

Floripa'sTeam 1 Floripa's Team 2

Any extra things making these events special?

Denver Team: Of course, we would like to thank everyone who has helped us in organizing this amazing event. This includes all of the organizers, coaches, speakers, judges, our wonderful sponsors, the amazing Techstars support staff, and especially those who participate in creating new startups at this event. The Startup Weekend Denver | Internet of Things 2.0 event. We can not wait for this event to begin.

Florianópolis Team: We will provide many hardware equipments for the participants like Arduino, 3D printers and others. Also, we will make a real-time coverage of the event on social media channels and live stream through Periscope so that people can watch the pitches. On top of that, we will also have special gifts for all participants.

Techstars & PwC to Launch IoT Accelerator in NYC

Techstars is excited to announce a new accelerator program with PwC focused on the IoT (Internet of Things) market. PwC is a founding partner in a consortium of companies for the Techstars IoT Accelerator. The program will bring industry leaders in the new IoT market together with the most innovative emerging startups in the industry for our three month, mentorship-driven  accelerator program.

The Techstars IoT program will take place in New York in 2016, and applications will open later this year.  Application deadlines, program dates and additional information will be released soon.

By 2020, an estimated 50 billion devices around the globe will be connected to the Internet – the majority of which will be sensors, actuators, and newly invented intelligent devices that monitor, control, analyze, and optimize our world.  Products ranging from connected consumer devices to industrial solutions will be candidates for this program.  Estimates of potential economic impact by 2020 range from $2 trillion to more than $14 trillion.

Whether it’s a BrewBot to make your next batch of craft beer, a motion sensor from Notion, or baby monitoring with Owlet, Techstars has a successful history of nurturing and supporting the fundraising of IoT companies.  

Techstars is following the successful model that has been proven with Techstars Mobility, driven by Detroit, to engage multiple partners in the Techstars IoT program. We are excited that PwC has chosen to lead the way as a founding partner.

For partners who would like to participate or founders who would like more information before applications open, contact


The Internet Of Things: How Can We Really Add Value?

This article is written by Arjun Mali, an emerging thought leader in the field of the Internet of Things. 

The Internet of Things, described by Wikipedia: “The Internet of Things (IoT) refers to uniquely identifiable objects and their virtual representations in an Internet-like structure.”


Basically, a world where every device is connected to the internet. Using sensors, devices are enabled to collect data about the  world around us, think of human activity, temperature, or air quality, and act on it or tell us something about it.

In most cases this means most devices become remote controlled, and are able to collect enormous amounts of data which can tell us even more things about the world around us.

“Connected sensors” are already implemented on a large scale in industry. Where current challenges for consumer market implementation lie in  technology, finding a balance between price, power consumption and performance, and are soon to be overcome, a large scale implementation towards the consumer market is only a matter of time.

Anything from a vacuum learner to a car will soon be available as a product that is connected to the internet.

Take a step back. Think of how Google offers services like its search engine for free, and still is able to make lots of money. Data is the keyword here. Google knows a lot about you as a person, and that is only based on your online searching behavior.

Can you image what one can tell, if all the other devices we use in our lives will soon be connected?

But, how many connected devices can you name that you already have in your house?

Connecting these dots, can you imagine the amazing opportunity that lies in this field. There is a huge potential, while there is nothing like a leader, who has been able to conquer our homes with a connected device yet.

Maybe now, the $3.2 billion acquisition of Nest by Google recently makes a lot of sense. Nest has been one of the first companies to set ground into our homes with a connected device,  by introducing a connected thermostat and, more recently, a fire alarm. What did they focus on? The user and its need.

The home is a private space. Why would we pay more for devices that keep track of everything we do? Do we really want to monitor everything 24/7? Probably, it will just be a matter of time before the current generation has adjusted their standard to what a normal device is.

Many stakeholders can be recognized in the context of a connected device. From a data analyst to a utility company, analyzing the data available will allow lots of different parties a profit. However, setting the first step is all about the user, who has to adopt and accept the device in its home. Intrusiveness, price, privacy, are all to be overcome by finding what added value can really be created by having all your devices connected, and this is, in my opinion, the biggest challenge for conquering one of the last battlefield of data collection, the home.

Whoever finds a way to implement the internet of things into our home environment, with a sustainable business model and most importantly in a way that can really add value to the user, might have the potential to become the new Google. If it’s not Google itself.


SW London is an official partner of our current project with the European Commission called FI-WARE. Their event promotes new cutting-edge technology ideas and prototypes. Just what FI-WARE aims to unleash – FI-WARE is an innovative, open cloud-based infrastructure for cost-effective creation and delivery of Future Internet applications and services, at a scale like no other. Driven by the development of an open source reference implementation and accelerating the availability of commercial products and services based, FI-WARE API specifications are public and freeWe’re really excited for our community to use their expertise and experience to help test and validate the EC’s FI-WARE developer platform.