intelloCut, a material planning and optimization solution provider for sewn products has raised $200,000 in seed investment from Blume Ventures and angel investors including Rajan Anandan amongst others. The funds raised will be used for global expansion and marketing.
Threadsol Softwares, the company behind intelloCut brand, was established in 2012 by a team of smart thinkers with deep understanding of apparel production and software engineering, with a view to turning apparel and garment enterprises into smarter ones. IntelloCut not only saves fabric, but drastically reduces the time and labor required for order planning and fabric consumption. It automatically creates a cut order from input data, suggests grouping, allocates rolls and plans remnants, by reducing number of plies, markers, bodies-cut and end-bit wastage. intelloCut were the first runner-up at Microsoft BizSpark 2013 startup challenge. With offices in Bangalore and Delhi, they claim to save up to 10% material, improves cutting productivity by 30% and reduces end bits by 80% in the practical scenarios.
Speaking on the occasion – Manasij Ganguli and Mausmi Ambastha, founding members of IntelloCut, said – “Acceptance from the fraternity and encouragement from our marquee investors motivate us to fulfill intelloCut’s mission. This investment will help us achieve scale through strengthening our marketing and sales networks, and developing new products from our world class R&D facility in Delhi”
On current traction and future plans of expansion, Manasij said – “We have successfully run pilots in over 50 factories in 6 countries so far. It has been 4 months since intelloCut began on the ground sales operations and we have signed up the biggest garment manufacturers in India. With biggies in Sri Lanka, Philippines, Turkey, Bahrain etc also in line for implementations, the traction has been very heart warming. We would be concentrating in strengthening our marketing and sales operations. We need to hire more people to support our sales and implementation processes in multiple geographies. India, Sri Lanka, Philippines and Turkey would be in the immediate focus for expansions, these markets are lucrative and offers great potentials. We are also planning to open a full fledged arm in Hong Kong to cater to the business that comes from the far east.”
We interacted with Karthik Reddy, Managing Partner at Blume Ventures on the investment and he shared – “Manufacturing efficiency as we like to call it has been an intriguing area. It’s easy to fathom that there are large energy and resource savings, but very difficult to conceive startups that are compelling enough to convince large enterprises to implement their solutions.”
“Mausmi has deep domain experience and had encountered this problem as part of research and found that the industry had become complacent with rather dated algorithms. After a year of rallying her co-founders to this opportunity, they got to a solution that works really well. The team’s global ambition is what made this an easy decision. While we like the space, we didn’t actively source such companies but when we found them having cracked their first few large clients and path to going global seemed possible, we jumped at them – we invested in Covacsis first and now Intellocut.”
“We love founders and teams that want to disrupt. We look forward to our partnership with Mausmi Ambastha, Manasij Ganguli and their team in their journey of building intelloCut into the de-facto planning software for the manufacturing industry. In an industry that is as competitive as garment manufacturing, they’ve developed software and algorithms that are saving 3-7% across pilots and their initial customers. This can be a huge boost for efficiency in this sector and we have some great co-investors who can guide this team to the next level.”
As an advice to startups and aspiring entrepreneurs in this domain, Karthik said – “It’s not an easy industry to serve – IntelloCut team have doggedly pursued partnerships, events and their initial success in India to look at overseas market for expansion. Indian companies are not well equipped to take decisions and leverage the benefits at the speed we would like to. Advice is that if you can’t access international markets very soon and test the idea there, the company will flatten or die. But that’s becoming true for most enterprise software plays out of india. It’s non-trivial but essential to build a $10 mil revenue base or higher to sustain and grow the business.”
On challenges and learning being in the tech space and serving the manufacturing sector, Manasij shared – “Since intelloCut is almost opening a new market segment of software in the material handling side of the manufacturing business, the biggest hurdle is lack of awareness in all spheres. For long this was considered an impossible space to be in. The second challenge is how do you show the value? There is first a concept selling, then dealing with the general skepticism and finally showing value in practical runs. We have to show the results on the production floor to convert people. We have surmounted these impediments and now sailing a lot better.”
“intelloCut excels purely because it can handle all the practical challenges this industry suffers from. We brought in the highly complex data analysis and algorithms packaged in super simplistic user experience so that less tech savvy operators can reap the benefit and sustain it. Our learning was to deal with complexity under the hood and to put forward a simple to consume package.“