In a series B second round funding, Ontario tech firm, Clearpath Robotics has managed to raise about $30 million in funds. The funds will be used to scale up the manufacture of the self-driving vehicles that the company wants to make.
The company is not making a Tesla kind of car, nor a Google self-driving car but rather Ontario wants to make cars that can move things around in the factory’s, warehouses and the distribution centers.
Confounder and the CEO for Clearpath, Matt Rendall told reporters that moving boxes and pallets in the warehouses was the circulatory thing that kept the world running and the global commerce industry. He said that the company believes that if they can move the boxes with relative ease, then they can change and improve the economy.
The company was founded back in 2008 and it started as a robotics engineering consultancy and computer vision firm. The company was founded in Kitchener, and now employs 150 full time employees in its ranks. The company noted that they also intended to use some of the money for hiring, marketing and customer support. The staff will be needed as the company starts to entertain large customers.
Some automotive factories have already started using the technology for what is called the line side delivery. This is when a machine moves parts to the appropriate personnel at their respective workstations, in time for some rapid installations and assembly. The robots use the Lidar sensors and many more so that they can better know and understand where they are going.
All the devices used are put behind a firewall because security has become a big issue. The robots are even smart enough to return themselves to a charging port or location when they start having low battery. The robot can also work without network as long as there are instructions given to it before the network goes down.
INovia Capital led the Series B, joined by Caterpillar Ventures, GE Ventures, Eclipse Ventures, RRE Ventures and Silicon Valley Bank.
Clearpath is following in the footsteps of Kiva Systems Inc., which Amazon acquired for $775 million in 2012, and turned into its Amazon Robotics division.
The new funding round brings Clearpath’s total equity funding to about $41.5 million.