When siblings Labinot and Mimoza Bytyqi fled the war in Kosovo in 1999, arriving as refugees on the West Coast of the U.S., they would have had no idea they’d go on to launch a technology company together.
But as adults, the pair set up attacking the $6.7 billion telepresence and video communication category, which hasn’t evolved much since the older business systems from Cisco and Polycom. By integrating their Solaborate device with Smart TVs, the entrepreneurs have come up with a drastically cheaper device and platform.
Solaborate has now closed a $10 million Series A funding round from EPOS and Demant Group. EPOS is a newly established company under the healthcare tech company Demant Group in Denmark, which makes high-end audio solutions designed for enterprise and gaming. The funding will be used to accelerate the development of Solaborate’s new product line of all-in-one HELLO devices and its cloud communication platform.
After two successful Kickstarter campaigns, Solaborate will now work with EPOS to combine compute, microphones, speakers and Smart TVs with their technology to create products fully owned by and branded under EPOS. These will include Solaborate’s patented auto echo-cancellation delay.
Labinot Bytyqi, founder and CEO said: “We believe that privacy is a fundamental human right and that’s why we engineered HELLO devices with video and audio built-in hack-proof privacy controls and end-to-end encryption for everyone’s protection and peace of mind.”
A HELLO device require only two cables — HDMI and power — and then turns any TV into a voice-controlled open cross-platform communication and collaboration device supporting video conferencing platforms such as Microsoft Teams, Google Hangouts Meet, Zoom, Skype, Cisco WebEx, Facebook Messenger, WeChat, BlueJeans, Fuze, Unify and several more.
The partnership will focus on video collaboration to deliver integrated audio/video solutions to the platforms of EPOS’ current strategic partners, such as Microsoft.
They are pushing at an open door. The video conferencing market is predicted to grow from an estimated $1.8 billion to more than $2.8 billion by 2022, according to some studies.