InUse raises €2.4 million in Series A
The Japanese distributor Argo Graphics, the Nordic distributor Technia, an early investor, and several business angels are investing €2.4 million in the startup. With this fundraising, InUse will develop its indirect sales channel internationally and its direct sales to global industrial groups. A new sales director will join the company and a dozen employees will be recruited by the end of the year.
Boulogne-Billancourt, September 2nd, 2021 – Founded in 2015 by Laurent Couillard, the company’s managing director, and Etienne Droit, the president, InUse is a startup specialized in the manufacturing sector. Publisher of an IoT SaaS platform, this solution allows manufacturers to meet two fundamental challenges that are the performance optimization of their industrial equipment and the reduction of the environmental impact of their plants. Indeed, thanks to the real-time collection and interpretation of data from the machines, the integrated IoT platform delivers information that allows to control production performance, identify malfunctions, anticipate breakdowns and reduce the waste of materials and natural resources. It is an eco-efficient solution. Today, InUse has more than 20 customers and the platform is deployed in 150 plants in Europe, North America and Japan.
Supporting the transformation of industrial equipment manufacturers towards Equipment-as-a-Service
In addition to its collaborations with factories and industrial groups, InUse works closely with industrial equipment manufacturers seeking to differentiate themselves and enhance their service offering. “Our solution is a transformation accelerator for equipment manufacturers, not only in terms of technology, but also in terms of business, as it is an effective lever for pivoting towards a service-based business model. By choosing to market new digital services via our solution, our OEM customers are no longer selling just machines, but also services that diversify their revenue streams. This evolution is fully in line with the transformation of OEMs towards Equipment-as-a-Service”, explains Laurent Couillard, co-founder and managing director of InUse.
An indirect sales network of specialized distributors
To accelerate the transformation of OEMs towards Equipment-as-a-Service and to foster its development, InUse will transform its sales model by relying on partners historically specialized in the distribution of PLM and CAD solutions. Today, InUse already counts among its fundraising partners two renowned companies: Technia and Argo Graphics, based respectively in Sweden and Japan. With a strong presence in large industrial groups, especially equipment manufacturers, these distributors provide InUse with new access to these companies.
“As a long-time partner and investor in InUse, it is with great confidence that we invest again in the company. We are convinced of the relevance of the solution and its potential for commercial development with our European customers” said Staffan Hanstorp, Chairman of the Board of Addnode Group, parent company of Technia.
“Through the partnership with InUse, we aim at helping manufacturers leverage their industrial data with IoT technology. This will allow us to expand our business footprint in the production field beyond our PLM core business in R&D & engineering, not only in Japan but also in Southeast Asia and China. This long term ambition is made possible thanks to the mutual trust between our companies and especially with Etienne Droit, the president of InUse, who is my friend for more than 30 years.” said Yoshimaro Fujisawa, Chairman and CEO of Argo Graphics.
In order to expand its international presence, the company intends to complete its distribution network in the coming months in Germany, Southern Europe and the United States. On the direct sales side, the company will continue to work with large corporations by addressing them directly through a dedicated sales force.
Strengthening of teams in all areas and appointment of a sales director
This fundraising will allow the company to double its workforce with new employees in all areas – R&D, customer projects, marketing and sales – who will support the 20 employees already present in the company. In this regard, InUse announces the appointment of Axel Branger as sales director. With more than 25 years of experience in sales, acquired in several major software publishers such as IBM and Dassault Systèmes, Axel’s mission will be to strengthen InUse’s presence through the acquisition of new customers.
“We are proud to announce this fundraising and thank all our investors for their confidence. This is the result of several components: a technological innovation aimed at simplifying access to industrial IoT, a turnover that has been growing for two years and the willingness of manufacturers to commit to the deployment of Factory 4.0 technologies. By giving ourselves the means to develop in France and internationally, we will move from the status of a startup to that of a scale up. This critical size will enable us to gain the trust of other major global industrial groups,” concludes Laurent Couillard.