Supply chain automation startup Locus Robotics has raised $26 million in Series C funding.
The company says it will use the proceeds to scale production of its revolutionary multi-bot solution for warehouse fulfillment, as well as for expansion of its sales and marketing efforts, both in North America, and internationally.
Participants in the round include Zebra Ventures, the strategic investment arm of Zebra Technologies, and Scale Venture Partners, which led the Company’s Series B round in 2017.
Tony Palcheck, managing director of Zebra Ventures, says: “Zebra Technologies has a longstanding mission of driving productivity in logistics and the supply chain.
“We invest in technologies that will help our customers increase operational efficiency and meet their requirements for on-time delivery.
“Locus has quickly established itself as a leader in warehouse automation, and the company is a natural fit with our enterprise intelligence vision in the warehouse market.”
The Series C investment brings Locus’s total funding to more than $66 million since the company’s launch, and follows a record 2018 performance during which Locus rolled out new deployments with top retail, third-party logistics, distribution, and industrial specialty customers across North America.
Rick Faulk, CEO of Locus Robotics, says: “The continued, rapid growth of the warehouse industry and a tight labor market have placed tremendous pressure on warehouse operators to find a scalable, cost-effective way to meet increasing productivity and efficiency demands.
“We have seen a massive uptick in demand for the flexible automation incorporated into Locus’s multi-bot solution, which is uniquely suited to address these challenges.
“Not only is our solution proven to dramatically improve productivity and drive down costs, but it is also a source of scalable labor that can be adapted to meet the demands of numerous product and customer profiles.
“This new funding will enable us to scale to meet growing demand for our revolutionary solution worldwide.”
Locus says its multi-robot solution enables warehouse operators to achieve more efficient fulfillment operations, while simultaneously managing both labor costs and seasonally fluctuating order volume.
Customers, including DHL, Geodis, Port Logistics, Verst Logistics, Radial, and others, are seeing “doubling or tripling of fulfillment productivity with near-100% accuracy, while saving 30 percent or more in operating expenses”, according to Locus.
Eric Douglas, executive vice president of technology and engineering at Geodis Americas, says: “Geodis is leading the way in automation digitalization in order to drive greater success for our customers.
“Locus’s offering delivers powerful results, scales to meet growth and seasonal demands, and is flexible enough for us to deploy it rapidly throughout our network.”
John Santagate, research director at IDC, says: “The accelerated adoption of robotics technology worldwide is driving significant demand for autonomous mobile robots, and Locus brings to market a unique solution that provides an easy-to-deploy, flexible, and scalable approach to autonomous mobile robot-enabled fulfillment.
“Locus’s multi-robot solution is unique in the market as it allows human workers in the fulfillment process to execute to many orders as they can interact with multiple robots that are working independently of one another at any given time.
“The partnership with Zebra is also quite interesting as it combines a long-time leader in supply chain technology with an emerging vendor in a high growth market.”
In addition to Zebra Ventures’ financial investment, Zebra Technologies is working with Locus to integrate technologies to bring innovative solutions to market.
Locus recently added an accessory power port to their autonomous mobile robot, the LocusBot, which features a Zebra printer integrated onto its robotic platform, and showcased a Zebra wireless handheld scanner integrated with Locus’s new putaway functionality.