NEW YORK — Retailers of all sizes are learning to use automation to successfully compete. Fabric today announced that it has raised $110 million in Series B funding to grow its infrastructure of micro-fulfillment centers in the U.S.
Previously known as CommonSense Robotics, the company was founded in 2015 in Tel Aviv. It said its micro-fulfillment centers can “help all retailers to thrive in the rapidly evolving era of on-demand fulfillment.”
The company claimed that its system “flips traditional fulfillment paradigms on their heads by placing automation in close proximity to end consumers.”
Last year, Fabric opened what it said was the world’s smallest automated fulfillment center at 6,000 sq. ft. It now processes up to 600 orders per day, including one-hour deliveries.
“Driven by our world-class proprietary technology, we are designing and building an entirely new logistics infrastructure in cities so that on-demand fulfillment can happen faster, cheaper, and at scale,” stated Elram Goren, co-founder and CEO of Fabric. “Whether it’s enabling retailers to profitably fulfill one-hour deliveries or helping businesses restock their storefronts more efficiently, we aim to be the solution that empowers businesses to better serve their customers.
Fabric stretches to new markets
Corner Ventures led the round, with participation from Aleph, the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board, Innovation Endeavors, La Maison, Playground Ventures, and Temasek. Fabric said it has raised a total of $136 million to date.
There has been a lot of investor interest lately in supply chain automation, including Locus Robotics’ $26 million Series C, Attabotics’ $25 million Series C, Geek+’s $150 million Series C1, Fetch Robotics’ $46 million Series C, and Takeoff Technologies’ $25 million Series C. Notable purchases include Shopify’s acquisition of 6 River Systems for $450 million, Körber’s acquisition of Cohesio Group’s mobile robots, and Teradyne’s acquisition of AutoGuide Mobile Robots.
Fabric said it plans to expand its operations across the U.S. in partnership with leading brands. The company also plans to hire commercial, operations, and technical staffers in the U.S. and add to its engineering team in Israel.
“We currently have 14 sites under contract and are rapidly expanding our presence in the U.S.,” said Steve Hornyak, chief commercial officer of Fabric. “The first site in the NYC area is already under construction and will be online in Q1 2020.”
Fabric offers its fulfillment network as a service, which it said allows retailers to use its multi-tenant network with no capital expenditure and an immediate return on investment.
The company recently built an automated grocery facility with three temperature zones. It is the first of 12 that Fabric is building for a chain in Israel.
It is also launching a platform model that will enable retailers to build and operate private networks on their own properties. “With the rollout of this new deployment option, Fabric empowers with unparalleled flexibility to build a custom solution that suits each retailer’s unique inventory level, desired reach, and operating and capital expenditure requirements.”