- sensiBel’s disruptive microphone technology enables true studio-quality performance in a small package
- sensiBel’s receives substantial funding from prominent international industry investor TRUMPF Venture plus EIC Fund and leading Norwegian VC investors
“sensiBel’s microphone is a breakthrough innovation that could revolutionize e.g. the fields of voice control and sound detection analytics,” comments Dieter Kraft, Managing Director at TRUMPF Venture.
(Oslo, April 19 2022) sensiBel, the disruptive microphone technology company, today announces a successful EUR 15 million funding round led by Germany’s TRUMPF Venture and including The European Council’s EIC Fund, Skagerak Capital, Investinor, and SINTEF Venture IV. sensiBel will use the funding to ramp up production.
Dieter Kraft, Managing Director at TRUMPF Venture, comments on the investment in sensiBel: “We are pleased to be able to accompany an excellent team on its journey to success together with strong syndicate partners. The optical MEMS technology from sensiBel is a breakthrough innovation that will revolutionize e.g. the fields of voice control and sound detection and analytics.”
Most microphones used today are based on century-old technology. sensiBel is breaking with the past and introduces its patented optical technology to the microphones to enable true studio-quality performance in a small size package, a quantum leap in performance compared to today’s mainstream MEMS microphones. sensiBel’s ambition is to disrupt the market and enable new and improved user experiences in a wide range of applications.
“We were told a few years back it would not be possible to make a MEMS microphone with 10 times better performance than today’s state-of-the art MEMS microphones. We have now proven with our microphone, tested together with customers, we have such a disruptive performance, and are looking forward to further grow the company together with our experienced investors and great team of employees into all markets where such performance is requested”, said Sverre Dale Moen, CEO of sensiBel.
The funding will enable sensiBel to ramp up production and support development and research activities. Consumer electronics are expected to witness significant growth going forward, driven by a boom in audio related technologies. According to market analytics from Yole Development, audio is the new must-have interface to interact with phones, speakers, cars, and even homes and audio is also bringing new immersive experiences with ANC, and 3D audio, but also sound transparency to better connect with reality (http://www.yole.fr/Microphones_Microspeakers_and_Audio_Processing_YoleGroup_Oct2021.aspx).
Egil Garberg, Investment Manager at longstanding sensiBel shareholder Investor, has followed the company for years: “sensiBel is one of the most exciting deep-tech companies in Norway. We have backed the company since 2018 and are looking forward to working closely with new owners with complementary experience and additional capital as we prepare the company for scaling-up,” Garberg said.
“We in the EIC Fund are glad to support the high-tech companies growing globally from Europe, and sensiBel is a remarkable example of technology and team's dedication to develop the world-class products. It is our mission to back the innovators with vision and private venture investors taking early stage risks to advance technology and best teams into leading companies in their fields of operations.”, said Heidi Kakko member of the EIC Fund Investment Committee.
Terje Berg-Utby, Principal at Skagerak Capital, said: “The extremely improved performance of the sensiBel MEMS microphone compared to competition, enables performance that have never not been possible”, said Terje Berg-Utby, principal at Skagerak Capital. “We are excited about sensiBel, their technology and team and the great feedback the market provides about the needs and opportunities for the sensiBel products”.
About sensiBel: sensiBel is a privately held company based in Oslo/Norway. The company has patented and developed a complete new optical MEMS readout technology. The first type of products from sensiBel using this technology will be the sensiBel MEMS microphones, providing a quantum leap in performance compared to competition. The sensiBel optical MEMS technology can also be used in other MEMS products like e.g. accelrometers. sensiBel was founded in 2016 based on years of research at SINTEF, to commercialize high performance optical MEMS sensor technology. For more information, visit www.sensibel.com
About TRUMPF Venture: TRUMPF Venture extends the TRUMPF group’s comprehensive activities to promote innovation and to detect disruptive technologies and business models early on. The corporate venture capital unit invests globally in early-stage start-ups whose activities are complementary or adjacent to the TRUMPF core business, such as advanced photonics and smart factory solutions. Funded start-ups benefit from an extensive network, deep domain knowhow, proven skills in scalability as well as support to access the TRUMPF group and its ecosystem. For more information, vist www.trumpf.com/s/venture
About Skagerak Capital: Skagerak Capital has invested in Nordic deep-tech and SaaS companies since 2006. We focus on companies with an excellent team that drives growth and want to change the world for the better. The Skagerak team is a curious bunch of people with experience from a wide range of industries that devote time and effort to the portfolio companies. For more information, visit www.skagerakcapital.com
About EIC Fund: Established in June 2020, the European Innovation Council Fund (EIC Fund) is a breakthrough initiative of the European Commission to make direct equity and quasi-equity investments (between €500.000 and €15 million) in European high impact and deep tech start-ups and scale ups. With a long-term perspective, the EIC Fund invests in companies from any sector, across all EU member states as well as in associated countries. The EIC Fund aims to fill a critical financing gap and its main purpose is to support companies in the development and commercialization of disruptive technologies. This is achieved by crowding-in market players, and further sharing risk by building a large network of capital providers and strategic partners suitable for co-investments and follow-on funding. The Fund pays particular attention to the empowerment and support of female founders as well as the ambition to reduce the innovation divide among EU countries. https://eic.ec.europa.eu/investment-opportunities_en
About Investinor: Investinor AS is an investment company. Together with founders, entrepreneurs, and other investors, they turn selected promising companies into world-leading businesses investing risk capital in some of the most promising companies in their respective markets. Investinor can make direct investments in companies, invest in seed capital and venture funds, make matching investments jointly with private investors in seed- and venture phase businesses, as well as facilitate pre-seed investments either in funds or by matching. Investinor manages the Norwegian state’s interests in seed capital and pre-seed funding scheme. For more information, visit www.investinor.no/en/
About SINTEF TTO/Venture: SINTEF is one of Europe's largest research institutes with multidisciplinary expertise in science and technology. SINTEF TTO/Venture manages several early-stage investment funds focused on the commercialization of research results. The funds have a capital base over NOK 900 million provided by SINTEF, the European Investment Fund and a number of private institutional Norwegian investors. For more information, visit www.sintef.no/en/tto/