The Columbia Maryland-startup Zuul has secured its first customer. Their first customer is a global public sector transportation and mobility company. Zuul secured its first customer after raising $300,000 in seed funding from TEDCO, the Columbia technology accelerator MasterPeace LaunchPad and local private investors participated in the funding round. The company plans to use the funding to move from a product development phase and grow its sales capabilities. Zuul currently has 9 employees.
Zuul was among the first batch of companies supported by Masterpeace as part of an in-house startup accelerator program called Masterpeace Launchpad designed to help its employees form their own startups. Zuul is now the first startup from the MasterPeace Launchpad to raise capital. According to MasterPeace website, MasterPeace LaunchPad is a technology accelerator designed to bring the imaginative and creative ideas of our engineers to life. Our innovation factory provides the platform and processes to combine creative ideas with technical resources, experienced leaders, and a purpose-built start-up ecosystem to launch new businesses.
“To date, IoT devices found in smart transportation, building automation and industrial control systems have not been protected with the same type of robust defenses found in the mainstream IT market,” said Zuul Founder and CTO, Edward Stanford. “Zuul leverages the unique differences between general purpose computing devices and IoT devices to enable companies in the smart transportation market to save time, reduce costs, and ensure that their IoT configurations are secured better than traditional IT systems, consistently audited, and maintained. We will use this seed funding to support our expansion into smart buildings and industrial control systems markets,” the company said in a press release.
Zuul protects IoT devices found in smart transportation, smart buildings, and industrial control systems with the same type of robust defenses found in the more mainstream IT market. It takes the complexity out of managing IoT device deployment, discovery, and management. Zuul provides defense-in-depth, hardening of devices, securing of communications, locking down of networks and applications, and integrates IoT device security with the existing enterprise IT security systems.
TEDCO was created by the Maryland State Legislature in 1998 to facilitate the transfer and commercialization of technology from Maryland’s research universities and federal labs into the marketplace and to assist in the creation and growth of technology-based businesses in all regions of the State. It’s Maryland’s lead source for entrepreneurial business assistance and seed funding for the development of startup companies in Maryland’s innovation economy.