Quebec startup Poka aims to help knowledge sharing between plants

Thursday March 08, 2018
Written by Manufacturing AUTOMATION
Mar. 8, 2018 - Quebec startup Poka has raised $10 million in financing which it says will help itexpand into the United States and Europe and better support its growing global customer base. In addition to the ongoing participation of Poka’s original seed investors, iNovia Capital and Uncork Capital, participants in the Series A funding round included Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec through its fund Espace CDPQ, Robert Bosch Venture Capital GmbH (RBVC) and the Leclerc family.

A web and mobile application, Poka aims to be the answer to real-world problems related to training effectiveness and knowledge sharing between plants, shifts and when workers retire by helping factory workers create, standardize, share and access content critical for day-to-day manufacturing operations. By creating a standardized multimedia knowledge base of guides, training content and solutions related to each workstation and machine, Poka aims to reduce production downtime, improve quality and safety, and facilitate communication across factories, departments and shifts.

Since its founding three years ago, Poka has assisted with the digital transformation of manufacturing players including Thomas & Betts, ArcelorMittal, WestRock and Danone.

“The greatest potential in the long term is not only in hardware or device connectivity, but also in smart software — the essential enabler of internet of things applications and smart factories,” said RBVC Managing Director Dr. Ingo Ramesohl. “Poka adds to the growing RBVC portfolio of technologies addressing the industrial and manufacturing verticals next to start-ups like FogHorn and Security Matters.”

“As production lines become more automated, the need for highly skilled workers increases as well,” said startup CEO and co-founder Alex Leclerc. “Poka accelerates employee onboarding and mitigates knowledge loss when workers change roles.”

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