By Eric Danziger, CEO & co-founder of Invisible AI
Today marks 11 months since the last time I set foot in our San Francisco office, socialized with coworkers outside of virtual happy hours, or wore anything but sweatpants to a meeting. As we navigated through spotty WiFis, guest appearances by our kids in Zoom meetings, and the general uncertainty around this new normal, we managed to have our best year yet. I’m proud of how much Invisible AI has accomplished in 2020: we built a strong team, raised seed funding, and partnered with a cohort of cutting edge manufacturers to advance how computer vision can ensure quality and consistency on the line every single time.
Our core product is an edge-based AI camera that can be deployed in minutes — we don’t require expensive labeling and retraining. From an engaging demo and some early pilots in 2019 we started 2020 with the core technology of the product. We were able to take our early success with manufacturers, who understood the value our product could bring, into seed funding to grow the team and build the product into something we could sell at scale.
In 2020, we raised $3.6 million dollars from a group of investors who believe in us, led by 8VC. We used that money to expand our team to include serial entrepreneurs, former automotive executives, web engineers, robotics engineers and PhDs in physics. We are solving a hard problem in a new way, so the high level of ability coupled with different modes of thinking of each of our team members is the only way to do it.
With our war chest and growing team, we’ve taken our product through 3 generations of hardware in 2020 alone, and many more iterations in software. We have added new process types to be able to provide more coverage in each factory. Driven by the strong need for the kind of error-free assembly that computer vision provides on the line and the ease of deploying our cameras we very quickly expanded to our biggest single-facility installation yet — 50 cameras in an automotive factory. We believe our product will provide more and more value the more broadly it is deployed: each new assembly cycle the camera analyses provides more insight into bottlenecks and sources of error on the manufacturing line.
Looking ahead to 2021, we have one goal — to sell 1,000 cameras. We are making our sales and installation process so frictionless that our customers can order the cameras from our website and install them in minutes without any support. We have already expanded to multiple facilities in one of our existing customers, and have dozens of new customers in the pipeline ready to go. We believe that computer vision can enable more than a consulting business — we are turning it into a product.