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1Mby1M Deal Radar 2019: LeanDNA, Austin, TX

Posted on Wednesday, Nov 27th 2019

LeanDNA builds software used by factories across the globe. With a deep focus on making inventory analytics automated, actionable, and collaborative, LeanDNA enables manufacturers to optimize inventory, avoid shortages, and stay on-time with customers. The LeanDNA platform promotes visibility and standardization across systems, suppliers and sites, unlocking working capital for the business.

LeanDNA was founded in 2014 by Richard Lebovitz, a 30-year supply chain veteran. In 1993, Richard had founded Austin-based Factory Logic, Inc., a provider of Lean factory management systems that modeled the Toyota Production System. After winning the Shingo Prize for Manufacturing Excellence in 2001, the company was successfully acquired by SAP in 2003. Richard then spent the next 10 years working to lead Lean systems implementations for manufacturers in 15 countries across a number of industries.

Upon Richard’s return to the U.S., he was faced with the same manufacturing challenge that existed in the earliest days of his career: Factories lacked the actionable insight and depth of collaboration needed to optimize inventory, reduce shortages and generate savings. In 2014, he launched LeanDNA, the only purpose-built SaaS analytics platform for factory inventory management and optimization. Adjacent competitors in the space include companies like Kinaxis, LLamasoft and Logility, but they do not address the critical factory management level of the supply chain.

The factory is rarely the highest priority for companies when evaluating or implementing ERP and business intelligence systems, yet department leaders and managers prefer and expect their teams to spend their time managing shortages and optimizing inventory. The hard reality of the current operational model at many companies is that buyers are often relegated to managing the most critical part of the manufacturing business in labor intensive and manual spreadsheets.

LeanDNA closes the gap between how buyers are expected to work and how they actually work, creating a trickle-up effect that empowers buyers in the factory to make informed decisions and create new efficiencies in inventory management.

Leveraging Richard’s relationships from more than 25 years of lean systems development and consulting, LeanDNA pursued early relationships with clients in its beachhead market of aerospace that resulted in many “land-and-expand” progressions. Today, LeanDNA has expanded its software footprint to more than 30 clients across more than 200 global sites in 13 countries. On average, LeanDNA customers see a 13.5% inventory reduction, with its top five factory sites experiencing an average reduction of 31%. Notable customers include Safran, JR Automation, Triumph Group, and Morgan Advanced Materials.

LeanDNA announced in 2019 that it achieved 36% inventory reduction in just three months for Safran Seats GB, which specializes in manufacturing business and first-class aircraft seats. Safran tapped into LeanDNA’s actionable inventory optimization software to automate and standardize the company’s shortage management workflows. Prior to implementing LeanDNA, Safran lacked visibility into its data integrity with its inventory data only 10% accurate, which left value-driving inventory opportunities hidden in cumbersome Excel reports.

LeanDNA’s platform is built for discrete manufacturers in the aerospace and defense, industrial product, automotive and medical device industries. The company is pursuing a $4 billion market of discrete manufacturers with more than $10 million in inventory. LeanDNA pricing is variable. It is based on the amount of inventory being processed within each site.

In April 2017, the company raised $4.5 million in its Series A funding round from Next Coast Ventures. It had earlier raised a seed round of funding led by Rony Kahan, co-founder of Indeed.

Following the company’s Series A in 2017, LeanDNA doubled in size, customer count and revenue in 2018. In 2019, the company is projected to grow revenue more than 270% and expand its team from 26 to more than 60 people in its Austin headquarters.

LeanDNA is approaching its next funding round. The company’s ideal investor is an individual with operational experience at multiple startups who has been involved in successful go-to-market launches.

This segment is a part in the series : 1Mby1M Deal Radar 2019

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