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Realtime Robotics, a Boston-based startup focusing on autonomous motion planning for industrial robots, completed a $31.4 million Series A round. This is an extension of the $11.7 million the former MassRobotics resident announced in October 2019.
New strategic investors include HAHN Automation and SAIC Capital Management, as well as new institutional investors Soundproof Ventures and Heroic Ventures. They joined existing investors SPARX Asset Management, Omron Ventures, Toyota AI Ventures, Scrum Ventures and Duke Angels.
Realtime Robotics, founded in 2016, said it plans to use the new funding to accelerating its product development and rollouts. It developed a processor that it claims can create “collision-free motion plans” in milliseconds, helping industrial robots and autonomous vehicles plan and alter their paths. The technology works on either a single robot or multiple robots.
Realtime Robotics said it will deepen its reach in the warehouse automation industry, while continuing to serve global automotive manufacturers and their supply chain. Earlier this year, Yaskawa selected Realtime Robotics’ motion planning technology to improve a variety of materials handling and fulfillment applications, including piece picking and mixed case palletizing. Yaskawa said using Realtime’s technology enables its robot cells to be deployed and used more efficiently.
“This investment by some of the world’s leading manufacturers and automation providers stands as a testament to our ability to dramatically improve the value proposition for robotic implementations,” said Peter Howard, CEO, Realtime Robotics. “Having already realized early deployment success, a broad spectrum of customers and partners are working closely with us to refine features and user experiences, readying our technology for rollouts in their engineering, factory and warehouse operations.”
“As one of the world’s leading voices in industrial automation, we understand the importance of improving efficiency at every step of the process,” said Philipp Unterhalt, CEO of HAHN Group. “Realtime Robotics has taken on this problem with a unique approach – using integrated planning software and controls to speed programming, improve flexibility and improve throughput, simply making industrial automation more affordable and effective.”
HAHN Group, a German automation firm, is well known in robotics circles. In October 2018, it scooped up the all the patents and trademarks from Rethink Robotics, the Boston-based cobot pioneer that closed after raising $150 million. HAHN relaunched the Sawyer cobot and acquired integrators REI Automation and DAHL Automation.
Robotics investments are off to a good start in June. In May 2021, The Robot Report tracked 36 robotics investments worth at least $581 million. There also were three mergers and acquisitions.