True Ventures has led the $3 million round for Mode, a real-time database that gives companies instant access to sensor data. GigaOm founder and True Ventures partner Om Malik has joined the startup’s board of directors as part of the deal.
Sensor data is collected from vehicles, cell phones, appliances, medical equipment and other machines. Businesses deploying these sensors, however, often don’t have back-end databases or tools to understand what that data means for the real world.
San Mateo-based Mode wants to help them make sense of it by moving the hoards of sensor data to the cloud, where they can better understand their devices and derive actionable insights. For now, Mode is targeting the solar, medical and manufacturing industries.
“We focus on data collection because we want to address common infrastructure challenges and let customers spend their time utilizing data for their businesses,” said Gaku Ueda, Mode co-founder and Twitter’s former director of engineering.
Ueda and co-founder Ethan Kan, who was previously the director of engineering at gaming startup 50Cubes, have a long history of friendship. True Ventures’ Malik says that’s part of what attracted him to the company.
“Companies are not a straight line,” Malik told TechCrunch. “You go through ups and downs. If you have a good co-founder, you have someone to get you through it.”
The round brings Mode’s total funding to $5 million. The company, which is also backed by Kleiner Perkins, Compound.vc and Fujitsu, will use the Series A financing to connect additional sensors to the cloud and expand its team.