The world is racing towards digitalization and enhancing the human experience in every field. From our daily commute to the comfort of home, everything is getting interconnected, and the technological advancements are taking place at a faster pace. Countries like China and the United States are leading in the development and taking the world towards the Internet of Things (IoT) solutions for automation.
This process turned out to be an inspiration for Hariharan Ganesarethinam as he wondered why our country is lacking despite having such talented and polished engineers. This was when he decided to work towards advanced technological innovation to address today’s and tomorrow’s challenges. Internet of Things is a complex technology that is available only to larger companies because of the significant capital available to them, and small and medium businesses suffer because of the high cost of adopting the technology. Hariharan wants to make this technology accessible by all the companies and to help with this, and he launched his startup – Factana.
The beginning of a change
Born and raised in Thanjavur, Hariharan Ganesh did his schooling from the town before he decided to opt for a Bachelor of Science in Applied Physics for his graduation course. With a background in physics, his keen interest in computer programming made him opt for the technological field as the area of his specialization, and this led to him being a successful programmer, and finally running an IT services business in the USA.
His recent interest in entrepreneurship got him to step out of his comfort zone and quit his job to begin his journey with this startup company. The co-founder, Sasirekha, has helped him establish his first development center in Bangalore.
What is Factana?
Operating as a tech startup, Factana is working in the direction of providing industrial automation solutions based on the Internet of Things (IoT) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) with the help of their Fogwing Industrial IoT platform. The platform provides them all technical capabilities that would help in implementing intelligence-driven automation in the manufacturing, logistics, agriculture, and energy industries.
Challenges faced in the offset
Talking about the challenges faced by them as a startup, Hariharan tells TimesNext that before they can solve the problems for small and medium enterprises, they’ll have to tackle those challenges themselves first. IoT and AI are relatively newer technologies; the biggest challenge for them was to gather a team that has some knowledge about the IoT. They made some significant changes by building the capabilities internally with the help of training programs.
With a great team in hand at the Bangalore office, the platform is ready to build a robust industrial IoT platform. They are in the next phase of the development, where they are working hard in the direction of reducing the price of the IoT hardware pricing by working with their partners in India and China.
Collaborations for the IoT
They have teamed with Cloud service providers like Microsoft Azure, AWS, Google Cloud for affordable hosting for their IoT platform. They are working with partners from India and China to obtain cost-effective IoT sensors, Getaways, and devices to provide affordable IoT solutions to small and medium industries.
They are also exploring for more IoT device manufacturers in India and outside of India that would help them get more variations and cost-effective solutions.
The first milestone for Factana
The first milestone for the company was when they engineered and hosted the first version of the Fogwing Industrial IoT platform. They released the Fogwing Community Cloud edition, which is free for people to get the idea of what IoT was in October 2019 and the Enterprise Cloud edition by December 2019. They are focused on building IoT based Apps on top of the Fogwing IoT platform, which would provide predictive systems in environment monitor, smart agriculture, and manufacturing process automation.
The current growth and the vision for the company
As it is a startup, they are still at the early stage of growth, and they are working towards piloting their solutions in industrial and agriculture use cases. They are working hard to make the Enterprise Cloud version reachable to Industrial customers.
The vision they have for the company is to be the leader in the Industrial Automation process by leveraging advanced technologies and helping small, medium, and large enterprise customers to be a part of the industrial transformation.