BeBop Sensors, Inc., a leader in smart fabric sensor technology and winner of the 2015 Frost & Sullivan Innovation Award, has announced it has successfully closed on a $5 Million convertible note, completing its second tranche investment — one of the largest convertible notes for a startup (based on Silicon Legal Strategy’s Seed Financing Report). With millions of sensors already in use, BeBop Sensors designs, manufactures, and delivers flexible fabric sensors for major OEMs, with its key vertical market in automotive, and additional markets in health, IoT, sports, medical, and gaming.
Awareness and demand for smart fabric sensors that report physical change is growing at an extreme rate. Unlike most fabric sensors that contain wires and measure heart rate, BeBop’s proprietary technology is the only known viable fabric sensor solution that senses physical change, such as pressure, location, bend, and stretch. BeBop’s sensors cover a huge dynamic range, are durable, lightweight, thin, washable, and easily deployed. They are also more affordable – by a wide margin – than other sensor technologies. BeBop’s technology has been awarded 6 patents with 10 more pending, and awards and accolades include a 2015 Frost & Sullivan Innovation Award and selection by Gartner as a Cool Vendor in 2016. BeBop has millions of sensors in the field with paying customers, and is rapidly developing new clients.
“Competence in producing complete end-to-end solutions makes BeBop unique, potent, and an essential link between squishy humans and rigid electronics,” said BeBop Sensors founder and CEO, Keith McMillen. “BeBop’s major vertical is automotive – autonomous cars, safety, HMI (Human Machine Interfaces), and the ever-growing need for OCS (Occupant Classification System) required for better airbag performance. We are engaged with 10 of the largest automotive manufacturers and tier one suppliers. Other active markets include IoT and consumer health.”
BeBop uses smart fabrics to create elegant sensor solutions for OEMs. Where things or people interact, BeBop Sensors comprehends force, location, size, weight, shape, and presence across any size, resolution, and geometry. BeBop technology is robust and proven with over a million sensors in daily use.
Many participants in the BeBop funding are investors from Keith McMillen Instruments (KMI; http://www.keithmcmillen.com), producer of electronic musical instruments whose work on fabric sensors started 8 years ago as part of the development of musical keyboards and drum controllers. BeBop Sensors was spun out of KMI in April 2014 to address the needs of OEMs for this new class of sensors. In addition to the $5 Million investment, BeBop will also be seeking a Series A financing to fund additional manufacturing capacity, as well as continue groundbreaking R&D to maintain its multi-year head start in the growing fabric sensor market. For more information, see BeBop Sensors website http://www.bebopsensors.com.