Kewazo, a construction robotics startup, has closed a $5 million series A funding round, bringing the total amount raised to $9 million.
The round was led by True Ventures. Existing investor MIG AG, a Munich-based venture capital firm and one of the founding investors in BioNTech, also participated in the round.
Kewazo is digitizing construction with robotics and data analytics. The startup offers robotic material hoist LiftBot for construction sites and industrial plants.
Initially, Kewazo is focused on scaffolding assembly – a $50 billion industry. During the building or dismantling of scaffolding, more than 80 percent of projects are still done completely manually. LiftBot makes assembly more efficient by automating manual material transport.
Using LiftBot saves up to 44 percent of man-hours, which directly addresses the labor shortage, a long-term problem in the industry.
The robot reduces the risk of accidents and improves the working conditions on-site. With minor adjustments, the technology can be applied to additional tasks such as insulation, painting and other on-site material transport.
LiftBot also collects operational data and provides it to customers in the form of a data analytics platform. Those insights aid planning and improve profitability, and customers benefit from faster, more predictable projects.
Artem Kuchukov, CEO of Kewazo, says: “We’re excited to have found a partner in True Ventures that understands our vision of bringing robotic technology to the construction industry.
“With the new investment we aim to expand our robotic fleet in Europe and the US, to introduce the RaaS model, and to enable further digital services. LiftBot improves worker safety, makes jobs more efficient, and drastically cuts the amount of man-hours projects take, all while saving money.”
Matthias Guth, MIG centure partner and Kewazo board member, says: “Since our Seed-Investment in 2018, Kewazo has come a long way from prototype to the marketable and robust LiftBot system. Having True Ventures now leading the Series A round takes the company to the next level and we are proud to further support Kewazo’s international development.”
The first batch of LiftBots has been successfully delivered to key customers in the EU markets. Prospective projects worldwide include scaffolding assembly at greenfield projects and maintenance jobs at construction sites, oil and gas refineries, power plants, and shipbuilding yards.
Kewazo has completed more than 40 pilot and test projects, and has delivered robots to major customers like Bilfinger, a leading European industrial service provider, on oil and gas sites in Germany.
Alexander Brod, branch manager of Bilfinger Arnholdt in Gelsenkirchen, says: “We have tested LiftBot during ongoing operations and immediately recognized the potential of the solution.
“With innovative technologies from the fields of robotics and automation, we offer our industrial customers an even safer and more efficient service.”
Puneet Agarwal, partner at True Ventures, says: “So many aspects of the construction industry stand to benefit immensely from robotic intelligence and RaaS offerings.
“The Kewazo team has a strong track record and proven solution that addresses a significant need in a critical part of the industry. We’re excited to fund this team and help them expand to new verticals in construction and other markets.”