HighByte, Oden, & TrendMiner Revs Up Toward Next Stages of Growth

Running an industrial software company is not easy.

Painfully long sales cycles, high entry barriers, and an array of compliance regulations, among other factors, make running these industrial software companies a particularly complex endeavor.  

To navigate these challenges and carve out a path to profitable growth, these companies must consistently achieve step-change growth along several fronts—a compelling vision, sufficient capital investment, market-fit product roadmaps, deep technical and domain expertise, synergetic mergers and acquisitions, and symbiotic partnerships, among others.

Over the past few weeks, three industrial data and analytics software companies made significant strides along some of these fronts, setting each of them up for the next stages of growth in their respective journey to market leadership. Let's take a closer look.   

HighByte Secures $12 Million in Series-A Funding Round

Earlier this year at Hannover Messe 2024, Portland (ME)-based Industrial DataOps software provider HighByte announced their Series A raise of $12 Million, led by Standard Investments, with participation from existing investors Exposition Ventures and Maine Venture Fund.

Founded in 2018 by Tony Paine, John Harrington, and Torey Penrod-Cambra, HighByte serves its industrial customers through its flagship product, Intelligence Hub. This product facilitates connectivity from and to industrial data on the plant floor, enables contextualization at the edge, and delivers this contextualized data to external IT and OT systems through a no-code/low-code environment.

Industrial DataOps is an emerging technology category largely pioneered by HighByte and a critical piece of the LNS Research Industrial Transformation Reference Architecture. Industrial DataOps software applications like Intelligence Hub act as the infrastructure that provides valuable contextualized data from the industrial edge to many other consuming data platforms and applications. LNS Research is eagerly awaiting to see how HighByte invests this capital infusion to expand the current capabilities and positioning of Industrial DataOps or perhaps move upmarket to be an Industrial Data Platform with additional storage, execution, scheduling, reporting, and analytics functionalities.Industrial DataOps

It is important to note that HighByte's raise has come at a time when early-stage capital investments are not easy to come by, especially for tech companies that do not include the magic vowels AI in their pitch. Given these circumstances, HighByte has done a remarkable job securing a foothold and increasing its presence in this rapidly growing category. With a 300% ARR growth in three consecutive years and industry partnerships with cloud and technology providers, including AWS, Snowflake, Canvass, Seeq, Tulip, etc., HighByte is certainly on the rise.

Oden Delivers a One-Two Punch with Product Rebrand and Series B Raise

A few days before the HighByte announcement, New York-based Advanced Industrial Analytics (AIA) software provider Oden Technologies made the news for two reasons: a series-B investment round and a rebranding of their product portfolio.

Oden's Series B investment, which raised $28.5 million, was led by Swedish investment firm Nordstjernan Growth, with additional participation from Flat Capital, INX International Ink Co., Recurring Capital Partners, Atomico, and EQT Ventures. Led by founders Willem Sundland and Peter Brand, the company plans to allocate the new capital toward improving data accuracy, domain knowledge capture, and prescriptive recommendation across its product portfolio.

Generative AI IconSpeaking of product portfolios, Oden's core product, which previously included both a data enrichment layer that formed its taxonomy model and an analysis layer that provided descriptive-predictive analytics and visualization capabilities, is now rebranded as two separate product offerings — Data Engine and Factory Analytics, respectively. Moving forward, Data Engine will serve as the foundation for Factory Analytics, Process AI, and any future products in the roadmap, including a Co-Pilot that will provide AI-based work instructions to the frontline operators.

Overall, the capital raise and the product rebrand together are well-timed to catapult Oden's growth by first expanding the performance and reach of its increasingly popular Process AI solution and, then, potentially opening up future streams of organic revenue through Factory Analytics and other upcoming products as part of the newly rebranded portfolio. This one-two punch provides clarity for end users and visibility for Oden to optimize capital allocation, putting it well on the way from an emerging startup to a market-leading provider of Advanced Industrial Analytics.

TrendMiner Changes Hands: To be Acquired by Proemion Holding

In other news, Advanced Industrial Analytics provider TrendMiner is about to be acquired by Proemion Holding GmbH. TrendMiner, a Belgium-based corporation founded by Bert Baeck and Thomas Dhollander in 2008, was previously acquired by Software AG in 2018 as part of its expansion into the industrial IoT, analytics, and platform sectors.

Similarly, Proemion, a global analytics provider itself, will likely leverage TrendMiner to expand its data monitoring and analytics offerings from mobile asset fleets to industrial processes, where TrendMiner's self-service advanced analytics capabilities support process engineers and replace the spreadsheet as the go-to tool for process and equipment analysis.

Even though there is minimal industry overlap between TrendMiner and Proemion, there is ample potential for collaboration; just like Proemion's software enables fleet operators to monitor telematics data and optimize the uptime and performance of their mobile assets, TrendMiner allows process experts to monitor and search for process parameters, perform root cause analysis, alert and predict out-of-spec limits, and build interactive dashboards.

The deal, announced earlier this month, can help TrendMiner solidify its position as the industrial process engineer's best friend for self-service analytics. For one, unlike Software AG, which primarily focuses on the IT side of the fence, Proemion stands side by side with TrendMiner as it deals with end users on the OT equivalent of mobile assets and fleets, making it not just a financial backer signing the checks, but a strategic partner with solid alignment in product messaging and go-to-market. With the right strategy and execution, this deal could potentially help TrendMiner accelerate its growth in the Advanced Industrial Analytics software space.

Summary & Recommendations

The industrial software space has been complex and fast-moving, especially over the past few years. Advanced Industrial Analytics is one of the most overcrowded and diverse categories, with several types of software and platform providers competing to provide manufacturing users with unprecedented insights. Additionally, merging categories, like Industrial DataOps, are fast-growing, as manufacturing companies are realizing the importance of having a strong data infrastructure to enable those insights.iStock-912617400

Here are a few recommendations for manufacturers to keep in mind as they try to navigate these technology categories and evaluate potential vendors to consider:

      • Understand your vendors' core focus and financial strength: Many, but certainly not all, vendors are growing in today's manufacturing environment. When challenges arise, vendors retreat to their strengths and core product offerings. Make sure that your most pressing needs align with your vendors' core strengths and understand their current financial position and strategy to avoid unpleasant surprises down the line.

      • Resist the temptation to DIY: Ask yourself, "What is our core competency? Are we in the software product development and support business?" Disparate analytics components are often easy to build in-house and even establish point-to-point integration with other systems, but in the long term, they lead to substantial total costs of ownership with increasing degrees of difficulty, complexity, and time to value.

      • Beware of the Shiny Object Syndrome: With the sheer number of options for manufacturers to consider, it is extremely important to prioritize requirements. Time to value, ability to provide insights at scale to the targeted user personas, and technical capabilities often trump the precision of the model or the elegance of the solution.

The IX Event 2024

All entries in this Industrial Transformation blog represent the opinions of the authors based on their industry experience and their view of the information collected using the methods described in our Research Integrity. All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.

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