GlobeRanger – Profile
HQ: Richardson, TX
Founded: May 2000
Management: Launched by former Nortel executive George Brody who has moved aside. New CEO John Koenings has the standard issue Texas tech resume – Perot, EDS, etc. Chairman is Ambassador James Jones, who ran the Mexican Embassy during the Clinton administration.
Investors: Company has raised around $30M, most recently a $5.5M Series B investment in November 2004. Investors are: Sevin Rosen Funds, CenterPoint Ventures, HO2 Partners, Startech Early Ventures.
Business Model: Company has had three CEOs and two business plans since inception. It began as a supplier of wireless gear for tracking the whereabouts of trucks, ships, and other mobile assets. It now sells RFID software. RFID tags can be used similarly to bar codes, but contain enough data to track individual items and can be read by antennae anywhere from 15 feet to 1,500 feet away, depending on the type of tag. Walmart has put RFID on the map by mandating that vendors use the technology.
Competitors: OAT Systems, ConnecTerra.
Dirt: Despite a lot of hoopla surrounding RFID and Walmart, the market is immature. A recent study indicated that ROI is unproven. Investors do not seem to have a lot of confidence – the latest round seems to be more of a bailout than cash to fuel growth.