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Outrider, a Golden, Colo.-based startup developing Level 4 autonomous yard trucks, closed $65 million in Series B funding today. Named one of The Robot Report‘s Robotics Startups to Watch in 2020, Outrider has now raised $118 million raised to date. It closed its Series A in February 2020.
Outrider said the new funding will help the company continue to scale. The company transforms electric yard trucks, sourced from OEM partners, into autonomous vehicles. Today, there are 50,000-plus diesel yard trucks operating in North America.
While fully driverless trucks and robotaxis are years away from public roads, logistics yards offer a confined, geo-fenced area and repetitive tasks that ideal for autonomous technology. Distribution yard operations are necessary for transitioning goods between the road and the warehouse. Today’s yards are run much like they have been for decades with repetitive, manual tasks performed in hazardous working conditions.
To automate yard operations, Outrider offers an integrated, three-part system that includes management software, Level 4 autonomous vehicles, and site infrastructure. The system enables customers to:
- Move trailers to and from loading docks and parking spots
- Hitch and unhitch trailers
- Robotically connect and disconnect trailer brake lines
- Inventory trailer locations
- Centrally monitor and control all functions
“We have built an industry-defining business with the support of an extraordinary roster of investors and partners,” said Andrew Smith, Founder and CEO of Outrider. “A highly-focused, mission-driven team combined with top-tier financial backing positions Outrider to move a growing share of the world’s freight.”
Since announcing its seed and Series A, Outrider has expanded its customer base, completed multiple pilot programs, and broadened its intellectual property portfolio. The Outrider team has grown to more than 110 employees focused on key system capabilities, including controls, computer vision, motion planning, robotic manipulation, cloud computing, functional safety, and multi-robot orchestration.
“Outrider is setting the new standard for how the largest companies in the world run their supply chains,” said Chase Koch, President of KDT. “This is our second investment in Outrider, which underscores our confidence in Andrew and his team as they seek to deliver greater efficiency, safety, and sustainability to thousands of distribution yards.”
The Series B round was led by Koch Disruptive Technologies. Other existing investors increased their investments, including NEA, 8VC, and Prologis Ventures. New investors included Henry Crown and Company and Evolv Ventures.
Outrider was previously known as Azevtec – Autonomous, Zero-Emission Vehicle Technologies.
Related content: The Robot Report Podcast: Analyzing retail robotics; autonomous yard trucks from Outrider