U.S – To enhance the commercial deployment of its mGripAITM robotic picking solutions, Soft Robotics Inc. (SRI) has announced that it has received U.S$26M in an initial Series C close.

Industrial robots can now mimic human hand-eye coordination thanks to mGripAI, an easy-to-integrate automation solution that combines quick 3D vision, artificial intelligence, and proprietary, IP69K-rated soft gripping.

For the first time, high-speed industrial arms may be used to automate bulk-picking procedures across operations for proteins, produce, dairy, baked goods, and prepared foods thanks to this novel pairing of robotic “hands,” “eyes,” and “brains.”

“We’re delighted that some of the world’s leaders in the food production and automation markets have decided to join existing investors in supporting SRI’s continuing growth journey.

“SRI’s technologies are increasingly crucial to enabling and scaling efficient and safe production of several food categories.  This round of growth capital strengthens SRI’s ability to rapidly develop, deploy and support those technologies,”  said Jeff Beck, Chief Executive Officer of Soft Robotics. 

Tyson Ventures, the venture capital division of Tyson Foods (NYSE: TSN), served as the Series C lead investor in Soft Robotics, bringing Johnsonville and Marel (AEX: MAREL) as additional investors to SRI’s potent investor syndicate.

These new investors joined a strong group of current investors in closing the first U.S$26M of an undisclosed-size round, according to SRI, who also received support from other investors.

Demand for Soft Robotics’ products has rapidly increased, and the company has produced the four greatest sales quarters.

“For decades, food producers have been unable to adopt industrial robot arms to automate their most labor-intensive, bulk production processes.

“Finally, there is a solution! mGripAI, with its revolutionary perception and AI, unlocks the use of industrial robots in nearly all stages of food production increasing throughput, improving food quality, reducing facility footprint, and breaking the critical dependency on labor,” said Mark Chiappetta, Chief Operating Officer of Soft Robotics.

Companies like Tyson Foods and Johnsonville are placing their faith in the implementation of robotic automation to help enhance safety and increase production in their facilities in order to fulfill the demand for high-quality, safe, and nutrient-dense protein products.

Both businesses have used Soft Robotics products in the past.

According to Rahul Ray, Senior Director of Tyson Ventures, the company is continually exploring new areas in automation that can enhance safety and increase the productivity of its team members.

“Soft Robotics’ revolutionary robotic technology, computer vision, and AI platform have the potential to transform the food industry and will play a key role in any company’s automation journey,” he said.

Kevin Ladwig, Managing Director of Johnsonville Ventures noted that they believe Soft Robotics offers best-in-class pick and place systems that are applicable to numerous primary and secondary processing operations. 

“We’re excited to be extending our partnership with Soft Robotics and adding investors to our existing customer relationship. We believe Applications that reduce repetitive motion and improve employee safety, in addition to enhancing productivity, are welcomed improvements for any operation,” he said.

The award-winning food robotics company also raised a U.S$10M Series B extension last year to launch its SoftAI-powered robotic solutions.

The round was co-led by Material Impact, Scale Venture Partners, and Calibrate Ventures and brought Tyson Ventures into the syndicate.

ABB Technology Ventures and Tekfen Ventures also participated to complete the round.

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