Levatas, developers of AI software for robots and drones at industrial sites, announced that it has raised $5.5 million in a seed round led by Castellan Group. Levatas was founded by CEO Chris Nielsen, along with partners Ryan Gay and Daniel Bruce, who serve as Chief Financial Officer and Chief Product Officer, respectively.
The funding will be used to grow the machine learning engineering team, help the company extend into additional industries, and enable integration with a broader array of data capture hardware.
Currently, Levatas’s platform and industrial AI models create greater efficiency for major chip manufacturers, global automakers, oil refineries, energy producers, and one of the largest breweries in the United States. Specific to each facility, the Levatas team builds and deploys fully operational models for analog gauge reading, thermal anomaly reporting, people identification, and detection of environmental changes over time. These tasks are then executed daily by autonomous robots, drones, camera systems, and other visual data collection devices.
“Our team lives and breathes the world of AI, but our core mission is all about people. We give machines the ability to handle the dirtiest, most repetitive, and dangerous tasks so that our clients’ human employees can focus on problem-solving, thoughtful execution, and company growth,” explained Nielsen. “Because we enable their machines to handle rigorous tasks, the organizations we serve can see demonstrable ROI, as measured by higher efficiency, more uptime, and safer workplaces.”
Through automating labor-intensive tasks like reading analog gauges and performing equipment inspections, companies can significantly lower operational costs and create safer, more efficient facilities for employees. The Levatas platform and inspection models work with a wide variety of visual-capture platforms; ranging from fixed camera networks, to advanced drones and quadruped robots like Boston Dynamics’ Spot®.
“We’ve worked with Levatas on numerous projects and we’re continually impressed by what they bring to the table,” said Tim Dykstra, Director of Strategic Partnerships and Channel Sales at Boston Dynamics. “Spot is an agile mobile robot that is particularly well-suited for industrial inspections, because it captures data in a standardized, repeatable way. The Levatas team develops machine learning models that enable the robot to respond to complex tasks based on visual data it collects, so together, we can continuously monitor industrial assets to predict failures earlier and prevent unplanned downtime.”
“The world of industrial robots and drones is accelerating at an astonishing rate, but what good are robots and industrial devices without automated intelligence to maximize their value?” added Scott Smith, Founding Family Member of Castellan Group, and new Levatas board member. “After meeting the Levatas team and seeing firsthand the value they are unlocking within their global customers, we quickly recognized their leadership in this category and we’re excited to watch them grow with our support.”