The Berlin-based scaleup MatchX has joined the EIT Digital Accelerator to speed up international growth for its Internet of Things (IoT) solutions. MatchX is a specialised provider of long-distance and low-energy network solutions that allow seamless end-to-end connection of devices. The fast-growing startup is meeting a growing demand for its LPWAN (Low-Power-Wide- Area-Network) technology for applications in smart cities, factories, train stations and more.
The company began manufacturing LPWAN hard- and software, delivering comprehensive IoT cloud and reporting solutions, in February 2017 and scaled quickly, selling products worldwide. Driven by the MatchX team and CEO Xin Hu, a graduate of the Internet Technology and Architecture programme at the EIT Digital Master School, the scaleup now sells to startups, scaleups, big companies and multinationals. Customers include Bosch, Deutsche Bahn and Canadian Tires.
"Joining the EIT Digital Accelerator will be very beneficial for us. We need stronger media coverage and more business contacts. The EIT Digital network has a lot of companies in Europe where we see the need for our technology. EIT Digital can help MatchX to become a European unicorn," explains Hu. "Decentralised IoT networks are the future. There are 300 countries in the world. We're currently reaching 40, so there is room to grow. Facebook's business is to connect people to people. We connect things to things. The world only has six billion people to connect but there are endless billions of things."
After closing a Series-A funding round of two million dollars in February 2018, Xin Hu plans to hire more developers to further enhance the programme code. This year he expects MatchX to grow from eleven to 40 employees. "I foresee that in three years' time, we will have more than 100 employees," says Hu.
Another strategy of MatchX is to use the IoT to build a blockchain data market with partners like the IOTA Foundation and MXC Foundation. MatchX will pioneer the trading of data harvested from sensors attached to LPWANs. According to Hu, technologies like Bluetooth, Wifi or LPWAN are just ways of collecting data. With MatchX's technology, a lot of common sensor data, such as location, temperature, and air moisture, can be aggregated. These are general data so they are tradeable. "Data is the new oil and we will mine this transmitted data from sensors and build a data market where people can trade and analyse data via blockchain. Yet, the blockchain data market will not deliver a return on investment because it is a decentralised network. The real revenues will come from selling the corresponding hard- and software solutions people need when generating device data. Therefore, people will need MatchX."
Matchx will be supported within the Digital Infrastructure Action Line of EIT Digital. Dolf Wittkämper, Head of the EIT Digital Accelerator, says: "EIT Digital chose MatchX because of its huge potential to scale up with a solution that could strongly influence the IoT market. MatchX has the ability to grow with us, starting with deeper penetration into the DACH region and then moving further into other European regions."
"We are proud of having MatchX in our portfolio. With our valuable contacts in the Smart Cities as well as in the transportation sector we will be able to strongly support them accessing international customers", says Dr. Wolfgang Kniejski, Access-to-Market Lead Digital Infrastructure & Finance at EIT Digital. The EIT Digital Accelerator supports European digital technology ventures to scale up in Europe and beyond by helping secure target customers and raise capital. A team of experienced business developers and finance experts operate from 13 cities across Europe as well as from a hub in San Francisco. Since 2012, they have supported more than 250 startups to access new markets and helped them raise more than €90 million in investment to date.
MatchX is an end-to-end IoT solution provider for cutting edge IoT LPWAN (Low Power Wide Area Network) products. Based in Berlin, MatchX designs and manufactures high quality solutions, meeting the needs of modern businesses wishing to track, sense and report device data.
Using the latest technology, MatchX hardware tracks device data at a range of 20km, and functions in extreme external conditions from -40 to +85°C . MatchX is the only company providing a complete LORAWAN solution including hardware, software, cloud and blockchain. MatchX devices are currently active in over 40 countries.