A Toronto-based startup that is bringing artificial intelligence and Internet of Things (IoT) to the gas and oil industry recently closed a seed funding round of $7 million and is expanding its reach in U.S. and Canada.
With this new round brings Validere Technologies Inc.’s funding to more than $10 million to date. The company which was started at Harvard in 2015 has created an IoT and artificial intelligence platform to help use data and analytics to create more transparency in the oil and gas industry.
“More than $2 trillion worth of crude oil is traded annually. As oil constantly changes hands, batches mix together irreversibly changing the product’s quality. The industry largely bases important operational decisions on poor quality data,” said Ian Burgess, Validere’s co-founder and chief technology officer in a Wednesday press release.
Validere attempts to help solve this, stated the press release, by using the IoT to make product quality more reliable by consolidating, and automating validated data onto a single platform and uses artificial intelligence to produce predictive insights that “guide optimal blending [of oil barrels], logistics, and trading decisions.”
With its platform and by improving these areas oil and gas companies can apparently get between $5 to $9 more out of a barrel according to a company report.
The startup was created at Harvard by Burgess who completed his PhD in applied physics at the university and also holds a bachelor in math and physics from the University of Waterloo, and his co-founder Nouman Ahmad, who previously worked for Toronto fintech startup Apexa.
Since its inception, Validere has graduated from Toronto’s Creative Destruction Labs and California-based Y-Combinator. It first launched its platform in Western Canada in 2016 and is headquartered in Toronto with offices in Calgary and and most recently Houston.
Earlier this year it was named one of Canada’s most innovative technology startups by the Canadian Innovation Exchange.
According to the release, this recent funding announcement adds another achievement onto a successful year for the company which deployed its IoT and AI platforms with large Canadian oil and gas clients and recently expanded to the U.S. as well.
It’s most recent funding round was backed by Sallyport Investments, Y Combinator, Real Ventures, Moment Ventures and ZhenFund.