FAMGA spends >$2B on tech startups- is yours on the list?

July 17, 2020

FAMGA spends >$2B on tech startups- is yours on the list?
Happy Summer all!

FOMO is real and you might have missed this tidbit!

Segway in Bedford, NH has ended production of their 2-wheeler on July 15th, after 19 years and selling ~140,000 units.

But don't worry, the micro-mobility sector has you covered, Scooters are making a comeback after the atrocious scooter wars of 2018.

...we are still waiting for a full carbon fiber version and extra bling to make sure we can arrive in style.
Would you consider buying an electric scooter? (Results will be posted next month)
This Operations Update is provided with generous support from
NPI and Contract Manufacturers (CM) in New England

The pandemic and the global political climate have certainly increased the discussions and focus on local, US, and New England manufacturing again.

The last couple years of manufacturing and supply chain challenges, from tariffs, to plant shut downs, and continued logistics delays have certainly raised the awareness of global supply chain risks and are forcing Supply Chain Executives around the globe to rethink their strategies.

Several of our customers have lately chosen to manufacture new products locally, and some are in the process of relocating their NPI or production efforts. There are certainly some tangible benefits; improved communication (language, cultural & time zones), quicker access to the CM facility for NPI, problem solving, i.e. launch or yield issues, faster and more simplified logistics (customs, warehousing, no/less import/export, etc.) and no tariff on products manufactured locally are just a few of them.
We have worked with lots of CM's, including many in New England.
Contact us if you plan on choosing a local CM (or need help with your CM).

The transition to or selection process of a (new) CM still remains company and product specific. To make it truly successful requires deliberate efforts from engineering, manufacturing, quality and procurement to ensure both companies are well aligned and understand each others' requirements and needs.

Many companies make CM selections by a simple RfQ versus using a data driven selection process and having open discussions on exact requirements/expectations .

It's one of the key decisions every hardware producing company makes and should always be carried out with a clearly defined and deliberate selection criteria.

If you hurry the selection process and look for quick (non-validated) answers you will absolutely experience (significant) problems once you have engaged with your project. Bad quality product, communication challenges, the CM not having the detailed capabilities you thought they have, etc. will certainly result in product delays, upset customers/teams, and lots of wasted time and money.

A common (mis-)perception is that CM's should somehow fully understand your product and potential performance risks by merely reviewing your drawings and files. Most CM's certainly have good technical capabilities but their expertise is in efficient manufacturing, and one might not need to understand how the product works to assemble it. Production operators that assemble your product will likely not understand (or care) what your product does. They care about making the product/sub-assembly in the time that they have allocated for it.

That is why it's important to have deliberate, detailed technical, and process/test & quality discussions with your CM to ensure that the proper knowledge transfer happens. The outcome is often additional modifications to your drawings/files in order to ensure your requirements / expectations are precisely defined and documented.

Anyone that has done volume production knows there are many subtleties to product designs and specifications that can and will be interpreted differently.

It's not good enough to just refer to specs/drawings.
It's not good enough to have the sales person tell you the answer you want to hear (verify it).
It's not good enough to have purchasing do a quote and select on price.

It requires deliberate effort & time from a well rounded team including engineering, manufacturing, quality and purchasing to make it a success.
We know Manufacturing!

If you want to learn more about successfully launching or scaling your product Contact us!
The State of Manufacturing (Improved significantly!)

The last time this happened was in 1980, the PMI Index experienced a staggering 9.5% gain month-over-month to 52.6% and several other indexes posted gains that haven't been seen in modern times.

New Orders and Production jumped >24% points and most industries are seeing solid growth after several devastating months. (Source: ISM)

Our take on these numbers is that probably many industries are in catch-up mode which triggered these significant gains and we would expect this to level off quickly. Overall we remain conservatively optimistic.

FAMGA ( Facebook Inc (FB), Apple Inc (AAPL), Microsoft Corp (MSFT), Google (GOOG) and Amazon.com Inc (AMZN)) with their deep cash pockets went on a tech companies spending spree.

Together they acquired 7 startups in the last ~40 days , totaling >$2 Billion (est.). The companies are:

  • Mapillary- Mapping (FB),
  • Ready@Dawn- VR (FB);
  • Fleetsmith- VR (AAPL);
  • CyberX- Cyber Security (MSFT),
  • ADRM Software- Data Modelling (MSFT);
  • North- AR (GOOG) and
  • Zoox- Autonomous Vehicle (AMZN)

Amazon has clearly stepped up their autonomous vehicle game with the $1.2B acquisition of Zoox. Given that Zoox had almost $1B in funding, it seems a bargain buy.

Boston Startups raised more than $2.2B in June.
NPA's 2020 Hardware Startups took in >$50M in new funding to keep accelerating their products. Bravo!

  • Nodar ($2.7M) and
  • Superpedestrian ($55M).

Check out all the companies that received funding last month here . (Source: BOSTINNO)

Altiostar Dish Network announced a multi-year agreement with Altiostar for a cloud-native Open vRAN software solution. More about it here . (Source: Fierce Wireless)

Bevi introduced a new Touchless Beverage Dispensing System to ensure a safer way to keep the water cooler chat going. More here. (Source: Small Biz Trends)

Nodar raised a $2.7M round to further develop their 3-D sensing technology for the autonomous and robotics industry. Find out more here (Source: SEC).

Rize3D the Concord, MA 3-D printing company introduced their new sub $4k composite printer, RIZE 2XC . This will allow even more companies to take advantage of industrial grade 3-D printing. (Source: 3D Printing Media)

Superpedestrian raised $55M in equity . The startup also acquired the remaining assets of Zagster. Find out more here (Source: SEC).

Vecna Robotics has been recognized as the recipient of three industry accolades; RBR50 Robotics Innovations Award winner , one of the   100 Top Supply Chain Projects of 2020  for its work with Milton CAT and has been inducted in the 2020 MIT STEX25 accelerator program . M ore about this here. (Source: Businesswire)

Half of all remote workers wear no pants ! Captain Underpants (Source: YouGov)

"She Sheds" are really a thing. Personal Space (Source: Quarz)

How to get your startup pitch deck in front of the best investors . Seriously! Happy-go-Lucky (Source: Protocol)

Don't be a "Karen" , the data behind the latest cultural flashpoint. (Source: The Pudding)
Enjoy the summer & stay safe!

P.S. Contact us we are looking for support in Purchasing, Quality, Engineering , support. Most assignments are great for part-time or remote work !
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