Software Defined Automation (SDA) was founded in Boston by experts from the cloud, industrial software, and manufacturing sectors, to realize their idea of "Industrial-Control-as-a-Service" (ICaaS). SDA's goal is to maximize manufacturing process efficiency and collaboration with so-called "git-based" tools. Today, SDA has offices in Boston, USA and Munich, Germany.
Recently, the company announced that a seed round led by global software investor Insight Partners raised $10 million, with additional investments from other VC firms including Baukunst VC, Fly Ventures and First Momentum. The money will be used to drive greater customer adoption on the one hand, and to expand its "solutions portfolio" on the other.
According to the company's own statements, its solution portfolio "revolutionizes" factory automation with its so-called "Industrial-Control-as-a-Service"(ICaaS) offering. At the heart of ICaaS is the cloud-based management of existing PLCs (TechOps). Other key components include Git-enabled PLC code versioning, as well as virtualization of PLCs on edge servers (Virtual PLC). According to SDA, these technologies combines are able to break down proprietary silos in control technology stacks and enable a modern, API-based microservices architecture. This new paradigm is expected to transform the daily lives of automation professionals by bringing remote work, cloud security, resilience, collaboration tools and independence from proprietary automation vendor hardware to the modern factory.
"With the new system, we are able to increase our automation productivity and securely manage both our machine suppliers' code base and our own PLC code base through fine-grained control rules," said Marcel Welz, Digital Engineer at Henkel Laundry & Home Care. He added, "The ability to run the PLC programming environment in any browser allows us to maximize the use of our licenses and for PLC programmers to access it through any device."
As part of the transaction, Jon Rosenbaum, managing director at Insight Partners, and Axel Bichara, co-founder and general partner at Baukunst, will join the company's board of directors.
We at ARC are also curious to see how the company and their offering will evolve and we will continue to monitor this topic.