Petnet Raises $1.125 Million to Make Smart Pet Food Dispenser

Petnet Raises $1.125 Million to Make Smart Pet Food Dispenser

Smartfeeder, due to be released in Midyear 2014, will run for about $199

Smartfeeder, due to be released in Midyear 2014, will run for about $199

Here’s one interesting take on the Internet of Things:

A Los Angeles based startup known as Petnet recently received a $1.125 million seed investment from a conglomerate of investors, including Grishin RoboticsKima VenturesSparkLabs Global Ventures, and Launch Capital, to commercialize its first product, the Smartfeeder.

As a “smart” pet food dispenser, this is not a new invention. For example, the Petmate Le Bistro Portion-Control Automatic Pet Feeder releases food according to a timer.

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However, the SmartFeeder goes a lot further, featuring “intelligent sensor technology, learning algorithms, and processing power that assesses the dietary requirements of a pet, creates a custom feeding schedule to meet those requirements, alerts pet owners when their pet has been fed and even reminds owners to purchase more food when they run low.” Think of this as Nest for feeding your pet. Petnet has already received over 10,000 pre-orders for the SmartFeeder at $199 a piece.

What’s interesting  about the Internet of Things is that there is a huge opportunity to be made in revolutionizing seemingly mundane tasks such as setting your thermostat or feeding your pets. Pet care may not be a bad choice for a startup either; the industry is effectively recession-proof, with US spending on pet products growing steadily even through the financial crisis in 2008, to hit $55 billion last year, according to the American Pet Products Association.