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Robin Autopilot USA, a developer of robotic mowing technology, acquired Mowbot, a robotic lawn care franchise with 16 locations throughout the U.S. As part of the acquisition, Robin Autopilot will launch an expanded partnership with Husqvarna Group, which is a major investor in Mowbot and an equity partner of Robin.
Mowbot will become known as “Mowbot Powered by Robin” and will move its headquarters from Durham, North Carolina to the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex where Robin is looking to expand its US headquarters. The business will be managed by Robin Holdings, led by CEO Logan Fahey.
The acquisition continues Robin’s expansion in robotics as a service (RaaS) for the US lawn care industry. In December 2020, Robin entered a similar arrangement with Weed Man USA to introduce robotic mowing to a growing portion of the North American lawn maintenance and landscaping market.
“Husqvarna is a pioneer in the robotic mowing industry, and we are pleased to partner with them even more directly as we work together to change how North America mows,” Fahey said. “Adding Mowbot’s experienced operators to the Robin platform will further our goal to expand our presence as a leader in disruptive RaaS technology for the lawn care industry. Robin’s innovative platform coupled with Husqvarna’s global leadership in robotics will provide leading-edge RaaS solutions for landscapers and industry professionals throughout the sector.”
“We believe robotic technology will play a rapidly growing role in the future of lawn care,” said Robert McCutcheon, president of Husqvarna NA. “We consider this an outstanding opportunity to partner with Robin, the leader in the RaaS market for the U.S., to expand our presence in this expanding market.”
Husqvarna in 2018 acquired a minority stake in Tertill, formerly known as Franklin Robotics, a Mass.-based startup developing a weeding robot for home gardens. Tertill recently named Helen Greiner, co-founder of iRobot and CyPhy Works, its chairman and CEO. Husqvarna actually introduced its first robot lawn mower in Sweden in 1998. The market has yet to take off in the US.
Left Hand Robotics, a Longmont, Colo.-based developer of autonomous lawn mowing and snow plowing robots, was acquired by Toro in March. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Founded in 2016, Left Hand Robotics initially developed and sold the RT-1000 multi-purpose robot. It later introduced an autonomous navigation system that is retrofitted onto manually-driven machines to turn them into autonomous robots.
Robin Autopilot appeared on the popular business reality television series Shark Tank but failed to make a deal.