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[Funding Alert] Company Which Made the Robot That Greeted PM Modi and Ivanka Trump Raises Funding Invento Makerspaces, maker of the humanoid robot Mitra, will use the new funds for research and development in building new robot variants, as well as business expansion.

By Debroop Roy

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Invento Makerspaces, which built the robot Mitra (meaning friend), that greeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Donald Trump's daughter Ivanka Trump, has raised INR 2 crore in a seed funding round led by Mumbai-based ITI Growth Opportunities Fund. Windrose Capital also participated in the round.

The robot greeted PM Modi and Ivanka at the Global Entrepreneurship Summit 2017 in Hyderabad.

Mitra is a humanoid which helps companies across sectors to improve their physical customer experience and access. Currently, it is deployed in varying capacities at more than 50 companies including HDFC, Accenture, Suzuki and Morris Garages.

"Companies like Invento which practice a culture of innovation, will spearhead India's economic transformation," said Rohit Goyal, managing partner at Pune-based Windrose.

Using the Funds

The company said it plans to use the new funds for research and development in building new robot variants, as well as business expansion into new industries and verticals.

Invento recently unveiled "Mitra 3' at the consumer electronics show in Las Vegas. The robot can interact with humans using facial and speech recognition. It is capable of autonomous movement and obstacle detection, along with speech synthesis in regional Asian languages such as Hindi, Tamil and Sinhalese.

"It is very essential that start-ups of our size not only look for money, but also the right expertise and connections from the prospective investors. We are lucky to have found the right grouping," said Balaji Viswanathan, founder of Invento.

The upcoming Robot variants would also enable the robotizing of manufacturing operations, human resource processes and other roles.

Explaining their thesis of investing in the company, Windrose's Goyal said, "Invento has officially brought the dawn of the autonomous age in India and we are excited to be a part of their journey. It's thrilling for us to see how quickly, banks, event management companies, hotels, malls, airports, cinema halls and hospitals are befriending this robot."

Debroop Roy

Former Correspondent

Covering the start-up ecosystem in and around Bangalore. Formerly an energy reporter at Reuters. A film, cricket buff who also writes fiction on weekends.
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