Investments in robotics and automation have only accelerated during the pandemic as companies look for alternatives to “non-essential” workers and a solution for manufacturing bottlenecks.
Bee portfolio company Rapid Robotics recently raised $36.7M in Series B funding led by Kleiner Perkins and Tiger Global Management with participation from NEA, Greycroft and Bee Partners. The latest round is Rapid’s third in less than a year, bringing its total funding to $54.2M, according to The Robot Report.
Rapid Robotics develops artificial intelligence-powered robots aimed at the industrial sector to make it easier for manufacturers to introduce automation into their operations. The company developed an AI-powered robotic arm called the Rapid Machine Operator that can perform 80% of the tasks done on a typical factory floor.
In an interview with VentureBeat, Jordan Kretchmer, co-founder and CEO of Rapid Robotics, stated:
“When we launched the Rapid Machine Operator, the interest from factories across America was immediate and strong. It’s only picked up since then as American manufacturers struggle with pandemic-related labor shortages on the one hand and warehousing employers like Amazon on the other, who can scoop up thousands of job candidates at a time. That’s all on top of the ongoing shortage of factory workers, which no one expects to go away when the pandemic does.”
About Bee Partners
Founded in 2009, Bee Partners is a pre-Seed venture capital firm that partners with revolutionary Founders working at the forefront of human-machine convergence across technologies that include robotics, AI, voice, i4.0, and synthetic biology. The firm leverages a singular approach to detecting new and emerging patterns of business as well as inside access to fertile but often overlooked entrepreneurial ecosystems to identify early opportunity in large, untapped markets. Bee’s portfolio companies consistently realize growth at levels that outstrip industry averages and secure follow-on capital from the world's top VCs.