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Igor partners with smart-building technology firm ‘Somfy’, files paperwork showing $400k raise

Smart-building technology firms Igor and Somfy today announced a partnership to make it easier for architects, designers and building owners to seamlessly connect and control natural and manufactured lighting.

Igor’s Nexos IoT platform, enables a variety of devices, such as Somfy smart shading, HVAC controls, low voltage lighting, occupancy sensors and more to talk to one another for optimal automation, cost savings and data analytics.

“The way we think about physical spaces and our experiences within them is changing. Smart building leaders are accelerating their collaboration to rapidly evolve technology so we can allow owners and designers the flexibility they need to bring humans back together safely and comfortably,” said Dwight Stewart, Founder and CTO of Igor. “Our partnership with Somfy is a perfect example of that collaboration, and we look forward to bringing many new solutions to the marketplace in the coming months and years.”

The two companies will host a webinar on Nov. 5, 2020, to describe in greater detail the use cases, technology requirements and owner-operator benefits of the collaboration.

Earlier this month, Igor filed paperwork indicating it has raised $400,000 in funding. In August, the company won the IoT World COVID-19 Innovation Award for the firm’s Nexos Intelligent Disinfection solution.

Previous coverage

Middle Bit: Igor Wins IoT World’s ‘COVID-19 Innovation’ Award -Aug. 14, 2020

Igor uses Power-over-Ethernet technology -Aug. 25, 2017

Igor partners with smart-building technology firm 'Somfy', files paperwork showing $400k raise | Clay & Milk
A central Iowa ag-tech accelerator has secured more backers and finally has a name. The Greater Des Moines Partnership first announced the accelerator last year, naming four initial investors. On Monday, the Partnership said the program will be called the "Iowa AgriTech Accelerator" and named three new investors. The new investors include Grinnell Mutual, Kent Corp. and Sukup Manufacturing, all Iowa companies. They join investors Deere & Co., Peoples Co., Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Co. and DuPont Pioneer. Each investor has agreed to put up $100,000 for the first year of the accelerator. Startups entering the program will receive $40,000 in seed funding in exchange for 6 percent equity. Tej Dhawan, an angel investor and local startup mentor, is serving as interim director until the AgriTech Accelerator names a permanent leader. Dhawan held a similar role with the GIA before Brian Hemesath was named as managing director. As interim director, Dhawan said his main job includes hiring the accelerator's executive director, establishing a business structure and initial recruiting for the first cohort. The accelerator will place few filters, such as location and product, on the applicant pool, Dhawan said. "When you’re seeking innovation, innovation can come from every corner of the world so why restrict ourselves," he said. One area the the AgriTech Accelerator won't recruit from is biotech. For its first cohort, the AgriTech Accelerator will work out of the GIA's space in Des Moines' East Village, Dhawan said. A future, permanent home is still to be decided. The accelerator's program will host startups from mid-July through mid-October, ending with an event connected to the annual World Food Prize. The GIA, which the AgriTech Accelerator is based on, also ends with presentations at an industry event. The accelerator has also started lining up a mentor pool. The Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Soybean Association and the Iowa Pork Producers Association have agreed to provide mentors, as has Iowa State University. While the AgriTech Accelerator is loosely based off of the GIA, it will differ in its business structure, Dhawan said. The GIA runs through a for-profit model for both operations and its investment fund. The AgriTech Accelerator will have a nonprofit model for its operations and a for-profit setup for its fund. Dhawan said the nonprofit model is being used so the accelerator can better work with other nonprofit partners, such as trade associations. "These are all organizations that are nonprofits and can be amazing stakeholders without ever having to be investors in the accelerator," he said. "It becomes easier to work with trade associations in their nonprofit role when we are also a nonprofit." When it's up and running, the AgriTech Accelerator would be one of a handful of ag-focused startup development programs in Iowa. Others include the Ag Startup Engine out of Iowa State University and the Rural Ventures Alliance from Iowa MicroLoan. Matthew Patane is the managing editor and co-founder of Clay & Milk. Send him an email at
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