MicroPower gets $5.7m investment

Ultra-low power wireless surveillance provider goes after new vertical markets
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Monday, July 29, 2013

SAN DIEGO—Wireless surveillance provider MicroPower Technologies announced today that it has a new $5.7 million round of equity financing, which it will use for R&D and to expand into more vertical markets.

“A number of [undisclosed] existing investors, contributed to this round of funding,” Aaron Tankersley, MicroPower Technologies CEO, told Security Systems News. He added, “This funding round shows the commitment of MicroPower and its investors to this industry.”

MicroPower offers “an ultra-low powered enterprise-class wireless camera.” Its MPT2520 camera is powered by solar, but the differentiator, Tankersley said, is that “it consumes half a watt, where our competitors consume six to 10 watts.” That enables the camera to have a “reliable five-day battery backup that can be powered by solar efficiently.”

In business since 2008, MicroPower’s last funding round was announced in January 2012. Motorola Solutions Venture Capital invested $6.5 million at that time.

The cameras have been installed in the education and government market, and will be expanding into the transportation vertical, Tankersley said.

“We have a successful pilot program with a Fortune 100 freight company,” he said. The company is using MicroPower cameras for “classic perimeter protection,” where running cable around the perimeter is not cost effective.

Cargo theft is a major problem for freight companies. Tankersley said MicroPower’s solution is “cost-effective for [that] vertical because it’s truly wireless [it doesn't have to plug into the Ethernet or a power supply].”

MicroPower has also been installed at the University of California in San Diego. “For them the big draw is event management,” he said. The cameras can be deployed for a concert or festival and then redeployed elsewhere on campus. “They liked the ability to deploy and redeploy in areas of concern.”

The technology has also been deployed at a major military base. The base has a storage area in a remote area that it wanted to surveil, but it was too expensive and timely to run wire to that area. “They were having a problem with theft and [there were concerns] about the safety of personnel,” Tankersley said.

MicroPower will be introducing “several different upgrades and versions over the coming months,” he said. It will also be announcing industry partnerships in the near future.