Dallas—Prodea Systems, a suburban Dallas maker of Internet-connected software, has acquired a California-based competitor, Arrayent.
“There are more and more services and systems and devices that would become smart and try to deliver information,” Anousheh Ansari, Prodea’s co-founder and CEO, said in an interview. “For example, we have connected dishwashers and refrigerators, but none of them can talk to each other.”
What the combined companies, which will operate under the Prodea name, will do is sell software that connects IoT-enabled devices, while also tracking and analyzing data each puts out in a way that provides insight.
The acquisition of Arrayent means Prodea can tap into the Redwood City, CA, company’s established customer base of appliance and electronics manufacturers, such as Maytag Commercial Laundry, Whirlpool, and Pentair. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Cyril Brignone, Arrayent’s CEO who will remain with Prodea as chief revenue officer, says Arrayent’s software also brings the ability to connect to other home-based IoT products like Google Home, Nest, Amazon Echo, and others.
Prodea, like Arrayent, was founded about a decade ago. The company, which is based in Richardson, TX, largely has customers in the telecommunications industry. (The North Texas region is still a telecom hub, though much smaller than in the tech boom heyday of the late 1990s and early 2000s.)
Prodea also works with governments. One of the company’s more notable projects there is a partnership with the Tata Trust in India, as well as the Rajasthan state government, to essentially turn television sets into basic Internet terminals. The connected TVs are then portals for rural residents—who typically do not have smart devices or Internet—to receive educational information about agriculture or medical help.
“This makes technology useful for people who have not adopted technology and have no experience with the Internet,” Ansari says.
In addition to being a tech entrepreneur, the Iranian-American Ansari was the first woman space tourist to travel to the International Space Station a decade ago. She, along with her family, then created the Ansari XPrize, which offered a $10,000,000 prize to the first non-governmental organization to launch a reusable manned spacecraft into space twice in two weeks.
Most recently, Ansari was in the spotlight in February when she accepted the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film for Asghar Farhadi, the Iranian director of “The Salesman.” Farhadi skipped the Academy Awards in protest to President Trump’s immigration policies that banned Muslims from certain countries from entering the United States.
Angela Shah is the editor of Xconomy Texas. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (214) 793-5763. Follow @angelashah
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