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Dirty, dull, and dangerous tasks such as inspections of fuel tanks or military systems are ideal for robots. Gecko Robotics Inc., which has developed software and robots to help maintain and build critical infrastructure, today announced an extension of its Series C funding. The Pittsburgh-based company has raised a total of $173 million in this round.
As part of the extension, Gecko is adding representatives from US Innovative Technology Fund (USIT) and Founders Fund to its corporate board. Both well-known investors in the defense technology space.
“This investment is designed to help supercharge our work, ensuring the critical assets that our military relies on to protect our national security are ready,” said Jake Loosararian, CEO of Gecko Robotics, in a release. “From our work getting ships out of maintenance cycles faster to helping build the next generation of military equipment, Gecko is proud to be increasing our partnerships with the U.S. military — and we’re looking forward to having USIT and Founders Fund onboard helping us continue that growth.”
Gecko Robotics applies AI to accelerate maintenance
Gecko Robotics said it has developed bio-inspired wall-climbing robots, sensors, and a data platform using artificial intelligence to provide customers with “unprecedented insights” into the current and future health of their physical assets. It claimed that it can enable “decision advantage and increasing readiness to ensure mission success.”
Since its initial Series C announcement, Gecko Robotics said it has experienced a major increase in demand from both the U.S. military and its allies. The company has contracts with the U.S. Navy to speed maintenance cycles for surface ships.
Gecko also has a contract with the U.S. Air Force to rapidly assess the condition of ICBM (intercontinental ballistic missile) launch facilities. It is part of the Sentinel program for modernizing strategic nuclear missile silos.
Last month, Gecko announced the launch of Cantilever, a platform that uses AI to help the Navy and other customers accelerate decision making. The system integrates data from various robotic, fixed-sensor, and partner systems to bring together data layers that were not previously possible, the company asserted.
“Cantilever drives important decisions for customers that increase uptime, decrease costs, and eliminate safety issues,” it said.
New board members to strengthen defense focus
“Preserving American military superiority requires that we not only maintain, but also build and innovate our critical defense infrastructure,” stated Thomas Tull, chairman of USIT. “Gecko is at the forefront of pioneering a new era of military readiness with robots and AI-powered software that will improve the systems necessary to maintaining our national safety and fulfill America’s vital responsibilities around the world.”
“Gecko Robotics is solving a problem that does not get enough attention,” added Trae Stephens, partner at Peter Thiel’s Founders Fund. “Maintenance is often overlooked, but it can mean the difference between having the military assets we need to respond to a national security threat or not.”
“American innovation is leading the way in building the future technology to protect the freedom and security of America and our allies,” he said. “Gecko is on the frontlines of making sure the assets we rely on are ready if called upon — both today and tomorrow.”
Stephens, who is also the co-founder and executive chairman of Anduril Industries, and Gaetano Crupi, managing director of USIT and co-founder and former CEO of Cabin Technologies, are filling the new board seats.