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Fetch Robotics, a San Jose, Calif.-based developer of autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) for logistics, has been acquired by Lincolnshire, Ill.-based Zebra Technologies for $290 million. The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021 and is subject to customary closing conditions.
Zebra Technologies already owned 5% of Fetch Robotics through an earlier investment. Zebra is acquiring the other 95% of Fetch Robotics. According to the announcement, Fetch Robotics “is generating annualized run-rate sales of approximately $10 million.” Prior to this acquisition, Fetch Robotics, which was founded in 2014, had raised about $94 million.
Fetch offers a portfolio of AMRs and cloud-based software for deploying and integrating a range of automated workflows. The companies said the acquisition will help them both integrate technology to connect human workers, tools like hand-held scanners and self-navigating robots, and the software that directs the flow of distribution, manufacturing and retail operations.
“The acquisition of Fetch Robotics will accelerate our Enterprise Asset Intelligence vision and growth in intelligent industrial automation by embracing new modes of empowering workflows and helping our customers operate more efficiently in increasingly automated, data-powered environments,” said Anders Gustafsson, CEO of Zebra Technologies. “This move will also extend our ongoing commitment to optimize the supply chain from the point of production to the point of consumption. We are excited to welcome the Fetch team to the Zebra family.”
Fetch and Zebra have worked closely together in the past. The companies announced a partnership in early 2020 by integrating Fetch’s AMRs and Zebra’s FulfillmentEdge software. Fetch recently announced full compliance with the new ANSI / RIA standard R15.08. In making this announcement. Fetch was also one of many robotics companies that developed disinfection solutions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
This is a great moment for Fetch’s CEO and co-founder Melonee Wise, one of the most well-known names in the industry. Her previous startup, Unbounded Robotics, abruptly shut down in 2014 after developing the promising UBR-1 single-armed mobile robot.
“The Fetch team is excited to join Zebra and accelerate the adoption of flexible automation through AMRs and our cloud-based robotics platform. Together we have the right team with the right technology to provide end-to-end solutions that solve real customer problems,” said Wise. “By helping customers dynamically optimize and holistically orchestrate their fulfillment, distribution, and manufacturing operations, together we help enable their ability to stay ahead of growing demand, minimize delivery times and address shrinking labor pools.”
Fetch is among a growing number of AMR providers that focus on the logistics industry. Some of Fetch’s main competitors include Locus Robotics, which recently raised a $150 million Series E round of funding, and 6 River Systems, which was acquired by Shopify in September 2019 for $450 million.