honeybee robotics mars science lab

Honeybee Robotics acquired by Ensign-Bickford Industries

Specialist robotic spacecraft developer will maintain its course through the galaxy, say new owners

Honeybee Robotics has been acquired by Ensign-Bickford Industries, a 181-year-old privately held corporation with headquarters in Simsbury, Connecticut. 

Honeybee builds robotic spacecraft for Nasa and has delivered systems for the past three Mars landers, and is developing a mining robot which could extract precious resources from asteroids.

Following the acquisition, Honeybee Robotics will be a stand-alone, wholly-owned subsidiary of EBI and will complement EBI’s current aerospace and defense subsidiary, Eba-d.

Honeybee will continue to operate from its current facilities in Brooklyn, New York, Longmont, Colorado, and Pasadena, California. 

Honeybee Robotics has been building advanced robotic solutions since 1983. Over the company’s 34-year history, it has completed hundreds of projects for government agencies and private enterprise in the fields of planetary exploration spacecraft, spacecraft components and subsystems, medical technologies, flexible manufacturing, mining, and oil and gas.

Honeybee will continue to serve these markets while gaining access to new resources and business expertise from EBI to power its growth.

Honeybee Robotics co-founder and chairman Stephen Gorevan, says: “Honeybee has been fortunate to develop robotic technologies for some of the most exciting missions in recent decades, and we have built a reputation for quality, reliability, and innovation in our work.

“Now, we are thrilled to have a new corporate parent in Ensign-Bickford to usher in the next chapter of growth in spacecraft and robotic technologies.

“When my partner Chris Chapman and I started the company over 30 years ago, we could only dream of having such a partner with long-term vision and the business expertise to take our technologies to the next level.”

Ebad serves as a prime contractor and supplier to most leading companies in the areas of space launch vehicles, satellites and spacecraft, missiles, and soldier systems.

Honeybee Robotics will help to expand technology offerings to many of the same customers as Ebad, particularly with mission solutions for mechanisms, control, instrumentation, and robotic systems in space.

Though both Ebad and Honeybee will operate as stand-alone businesses within EBI, the businesses will work together closely to develop advanced and innovative ways to meet customer needs and to create new, efficient solutions in the spacecraft and advanced robotics markets.

Brendan Walsh, president of Ebad, says: “Honeybee has established impressive capabilities for high growth Satellite and Space Exploration markets.

“This is a great addition to EBI and will give us the opportunity to broaden our offerings to many of our core customers while also extending our reach into new exciting growth markets.”

Kiel Davis, president of Honeybee Robotics, says: “The timing is great. Honeybee has a range of new spacecraft motion control and robotics products coming to market.

“And EBI has the experience and resources to help us scale up and optimize our production operations so that we can meet the needs of our customers today and in the near future.”