Aiir Innovations says it will use the funds to grow its remote-first team and expand globally, and set a new standard for engine inspections.
What does Aiir Innovations offer?
Founded in 2016 by Bart Vredebregt, Miriam Huijser, Cassandra Loor, Fritjof Büttner, Steve Nowee, and Jan van Gemert, Aiir Innovations claims to make aircraft engine inspection faster, more efficient, and safer.
Aircraft engine examination consists of a visual inspection, which requires high concentration during the entire inspection. In most cases, it is time-consuming and exhausting. This is where the Dutch company steps in.
The company has developed a software that mechanics can use during borescope inspections to detect anomalies like cracks and dents.
The software helps increase the inspection’s productivity, enabling the mechanic to focus on assessing the damage. The software will get an indicating function and is self-learning.
CTO Miriam Huijser says, “Ensuring jet engines are inspected completely and objectively is key to ensuring the safety and efficiency of aircraft. Aiir achieves this by actively supporting human inspectors in all aspects of the job, from managing reporting requirements to an AI assistant for detecting potentially missed defects.”
“With its software, Aiir Innovations supports inspections across the lifecycle of the engine, during maintenance, lease transitions and more,” adds Huijser.
The Dutch company currently works with KLM Airlines, Waygate Technologies and MTU Leasing Services, among others.
Investors in this round
The round was led by the Netherlands-based VC fund Borski Fund. Established by Simone Brummelhuis and Laura Rooseboom, the firm is committed to diversity and gender equality and invests in tech startups.
Borski Fund invests in the fields of sustainable industries, fashion technology and the future of health, and its portfolio has over 80 per cent AI-enabled companies.
HearstLab aims to bridge the investment gap between male-led and female-led startups. It is an initiative of its chairwoman, Eve Burton.
In 2019, Marscha Krouwel (CEO of Hearst Netherlands) established HearstLab in the Netherlands, the first country outside the US. This year, the launch of HearstLab Europe was led by Kenan Packman (GM, HearstLab Europe).
Eve Burton, Executive VP of Hearst Corporation & Chairwoman of HearstLab, says, “As an investor focused on female-led startups, we were particularly drawn to Aiir because of the strong presence of female leadership on the technology and product side with deep AI knowledge and experience.”
Dutch-based Mainport Innovation Fund (MIF) is an initiative of Royal Schiphol Group, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Delft University of Technology, the Dutch Railways (NS) and the Port of Amsterdam, in collaboration with fund manager NBI Investors.
It focuses on accelerating innovations in logistics, aviation and transport and supports entrepreneurs by combining VC with strategic expertise and a network of transport partners.