Xperiel, a Sunnyvale, California-based Internet of Things (IoT) company formed by a group of former Google engineers, received $7 million in funding from several high-profile Silicon Valley investors. Those investors include Sun Microsystems’ co-founder Andy Bechtolsheim, Stanford president John Hennessy, Intuit’s Scott Cook, Google board member Diane Greene, and Uber founder Garrett Camp.
Xperiel founders — brothers Alex Hertel, CEO, and Philipp Hertel, CTO — say they will use the funding to grow the company’s sales and marketing organization and to recruit engineering and leadership talent for the team.
Xperiel’s founders say the company is different from other IoT startups because its platform provides an orchestration layer for what it calls the “Real World Web” and makes it possible to connect cloud-based applications and deliver “mixed” reality experiences to any operating system or connected device.
In an interview with SDxCentral, CEO Alex Hertel explains the Real World Web is a way of making the real world digitally interactive. “We are pushing the Internet to the real world,” he says.
Specifically, the company is using technology developed by the Hertel brothers when they were working on their Ph.D’s at the University of Toronto in 2008. The technology will connect digital and physical assets – such as connecting a stadium scoreboard to digital signage to social channels and the television, and it will deliver interactive marketing experiences to fans in a stadium.
The Hertel brothers do have a history of making successful technologies. They created Walleto, which was acquired by Google to form the basis of Google Wallet.
Because of the consumer marketing angle, the company is initially targeting many sports teams with its technology and so far several are interested in Xperiel. The LA Dodgers are strategic investors in the firm as is the Major League Baseball and basketball star Carmelo Anthony.
Xperiel joins a number of Silicon Valley startups that are focused on the IoT space. And it’s no surprise that so many are devoting time and resource to IoT. According to research firm Strategy Analytics, IoT will be a $150 billion market this year and will grow to $550 billion in 2025.
Plus, Strategy Analytics estimates that IoT will represent a $3.5 trillion market cumulatively from 2016 to 2025.