TROY – Automation Alley announced Tuesday it has made an investment in Ulendo, a software services company focused on delivering advanced solutions for manufacturing automation.
Automation Alley is making the investment through the Industry 4.0 Accelerator, the nation’s first Industry 4.0-specific accelerator. Automation Alley’s investment was part of a $1 million seed round made along with its partners Michigan Economic Development Corp., the Centrepolis Accelerator at Lawrence Technological University, and Jackson-based Lean Rocket Lab.
Ulendo creates software that improves the productivity and quality of manufacturing machines at a low cost. The company’s software helps companies monitor, control and improve the performance of their manufacturing process.
“Automation Alley’s participation in our fundraising round is supercharging the sales of our first product, vibration compensation software that doubles the speed of 3D printers,” said Ulendo CEO Brenda Jones. “This funding enabled us to recruit a 13-year veteran of the additive manufacturing industry, Jay Murray, as our vice president of sales.”
The Industry 4.0 Accelerator program was established in 2020 with $1.3 million from the MEDC. Investments are available for early-stage companies looking to commercialize products, services or technologies within the Industry 4.0 sector. Through its distinct structure, the accelerator services connect participating startups with more than 30 corporate partners, including the automakers, Tier One and Tier Two suppliers.
“Many of our partners have long been impressed with the visionary leadership and level of innovation from the team at Ulendo,” Automation Alley CEO Tom Kelly said. “The company has proven itself over the past several years to be a pioneer in advanced software for manufacturing machines. We are investing in Ulendo not just because we believe in its future – but also because we believe their technology and expertise will enable our members to prepare for the demands of Industry 4.0.”
Ulendo is the fifth investment in Michigan companies from the accelerator. Previous investments include Andonix, which develops worker safety systems that provide operation intelligence directly from the shop floor; Autaza, a developer of AI-enabled computer vision systems; PPAP Manager, a cloud-based solution that streamlines and automates the production part approval process; and UnitX, a company focused on automating defect inspections at high throughput and high repeatability using deep learning and robotics.
The accelerator has received hundreds of applications from startups in more than 30 countries and currently provides various levels of support to help more than 60 companies market themselves in Michigan.
Startups vie to become part of the accelerator because of the multi-pronged training, education, and exposure it offers both internally and from corporate partners. The Accelerator also helps startups gain traction in Michigan’s manufacturing ecosystem and bring innovative technologies to market. To learn more about the Industry 4.0 Accelerator or to apply, visit https://www.i40accelerator.com/.