This startup is helping companies overcome supply chain issues with its IoT-based solutions
Globally, a quarter of vaccines lose their effectiveness and go waste by the time they arrive at their destination due to incorrect shipping and supply chain procedures.
To solve this issue and ensure end-to-end transparency across the supply chain ecosystem, IIT Bombay alumni Prashanth Dharawath and Sai Kiran, along with Anirban Gupta, a seasoned business veteran and alumnus of Harvard Business School, founded Adapt Ideations in 2017.
The startup aims to build cold chain transparency and asset intelligence solutions that help supply chains across the world seamlessly connect and manage their operations.
“A large portion of current wastage can be avoided by deploying smart, IoT-based, end-to-end asset monitoring solutions within these supply chains. These wireless devices can help assist the managers of supply chains in tracking asset safety and health like temperature, humidity, location, shock, light exposure, etc., all the way through production, storage, and transport until final delivery. This visibility across the cold chain will enable a better understanding of the asset’s overall health and give insights into potential points of failure, thereby reducing the possibility of wastage,” Prashanth tells YourStory.
Headquartered in Singapore, the startup operates in India, Australia/NZ, and the US at present.
The product line
The startup offers IoT-enabled asset tracking and monitoring solutions under the brand name. Its product offerings consist of Kelvin, Pixel, and Proton range of devices, each specialised for use in different parts of the cold chain ecosystem.
Adapt has also built a reliable and easy-to-use wireless data logging device along with providing cloud-based software solutions to view and analyse key asset’s health parameters in real-time.
“We meticulously fine-tuned every aspect of design, manufacturing, and assembly until we had a product line-up that aligned with the existing operational protocols of our clients, whether it is a cold storage warehouse, a third party logistics provider, a blood bank or a manufacturer of pharmaceuticals. We also started developing customised datalogging solutions for each stakeholder in storage, freight and logistics, food, and pharmaceuticals,” states Prashanth.
Team Adapt Ideations
It’s flagship product Kelvin is a wireless, lightweight device that logs the temperature, humidity, location, light, shock, and other details. It is available in single use and multi-use variants and was designed as a generalised light weight tool to monitor all key asset health parameters and has a battery life of around two weeks.
Prashanth says, Kelvin V2, which is currently under development, will double the battery life to a full month of wireless data logging.
Kelvin is currently used by industry leaders such as JWL in managing their logistics operations. Kelvin is FAA & IATA compliant, allowing it to automatically switch into airplane mode and back during flight using end-point AI that recognises take-off and landing of the flight.
“Gathering from the learnings of Kelvin’s use in the market, we have promptly added another range of Pixel devices, which are designed specifically for cold warehouses and other stationary temperature/humidity monitoring,” he states.
YS Design team
Pixel devices are also completely wireless, but have a larger battery, giving them a shelf life of two years, with a recharge time of just 12 hours. Both Kelvin and Pixel come in Wi-Fi and 4G variants. Pixel devices are adopted by leading cold storage and pharmaceutical companies like Abbott.
The startup’s Proton line of products are aimed at clients in need of USB-based passive dataloggers that can be connected to a PC for retrieving the trip report (in PDF & CSV formats) without the need for any additional software.
These three families of devices - Kelvin, Pixel and Proton - together are a one-stop solution for both storage and transport of temperature sensitive assets anywhere across the world, claim the founders.
Safe delivery of vaccines
The world witnessed how the storage and distribution of the COVID vaccine was a challenge to cold chain operators and technology providers across the globe.
To protect the COVID-19 vaccine from temperature exposure and theft, a large number of tracking sensors needed to be installed to accompany the vaccine consignments moving across borders. The trackers needed to be automated so that they could be tracked from their source to the destination without any manual intervention. Extreme care was needed to ensure the asset monitoring is uninterrupted, end-to-end, and at the same time operations are not disrupted or delayed.
Prashanth says, “With the global chip crisis and shipping anomalies, COVID-19 indeed tested the resilience of the pharmaceutical industry and the logistics providers. The team at Adapt stood up to the challenge and delivered the vaccines without compromising on the quality, playing our role in the COVID vaccine drive.”
With a market proven product in the Kelvin range of devices, the company needed to scale its production to meet the surging demand for temperature monitoring devices. According to the team, the devices helped ensure the safety and efficacy of the vaccines by monitoring key parameters and wirelessly transmitting for compliance and verification by all relevant stakeholders in the cold chain in real-time.
Prashanth claims, “These devices, along with the Cloud Data Suite, will form the bedrock of asset monitoring for our clients when it comes to safeguarding temperature sensitive, high value assets across industries like pharma, food and beverages, meat, seafood, fleet management, and logistics along with more esoteric fields like fine art preservation, cash logistics, and production, storage and transport of blood, and COVID vaccines.”
With a team size of 50 members, Prashanth heads the Asia operations for Adapt and leverages his in-depth knowledge of narrowband IoT technology, industrial robotics, and self-driving vehicles to lead the product vision. Co-founder Sai Kiran is responsible for the R&D and technical operations in the Asia Pacific region, and Anirban, along with his team, helps clients with their digital transformations and uses technology as a competitive differentiator.
Market size and revenue
The global cold chain logistics market was valued at $202.17 billion in 2020, and is projected to reach $782.27 billion by 2030, registering a CAGR of 14.6 percent from 2021 to 2030.
“Over four years were spent on scaling the business in global markets and building product portfolio with specialised solutions that can cater to every sector in the cold chain. In the latter part of 2020, we participated in the Qualcomm Design in India challenge and got featured by them,” adds Prashanth.
He says, “With a handful of well-established clients like JWL, Abbott, and OnShore, along with our other trusted userbase, our revenue is growing faster than ever. We are currently guiding for a FY2021-22 revenue of $2 million, and our current revenue projections for FY2022-23 stands at $6 million across three markets. To achieve this 3X revenue growth in two years, we are channeling all our cashflow back into R&D, hiring new talent and expanding our efforts in manufacturing, assembly and marketing.”
The startup competes with companies like Tive and Roambee.
Funding and way ahead
Adapt Ideations raised $2.5 million in its pre series A round in February 2021 led by Fomento Associated Singapore Holdings, with further participation from Angelhub Hongkong, Red door USA, and Roadknight AU.
The startup said it plans to increase its R&D efforts towards expanding its product offerings to assist all stakeholders in the supply chain.
“We currently offer eight stable products across our Kelvin, Pixel, and Proton line-ups, and our aim is to expand it to over 25 devices,” says Prashanth.
“We have plans to reach out to new markets in the Europe, where our devices can readily solve the need for low-cost, compliance ready monitoring solutions,” he adds.
The startup wishes to drive down the cost of its devices with product iterations and by leveraging economies of scale, as it ramps up its assembly and manufacture side of the business.
“This is key to ensuring that every sector in the supply chain ecosystem has access to low cost, wireless devices to monitor and protect their cold chain assets without compromising on profit margins,” concludes Prashanth.