BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Southie Autonomy, a developer of intelligent robotic automation, today announced it has raised $2.5 million in seed funding led by BootstrapLabs, a venture capital firm focused on applied artificial intelligence, and with the participation of Ocean Azul. Kineo Finance participated in the equity round and is providing an additional $5 million in venture leasing to support Southie’s disruptive robot-as-a-service business model.
Supply chain disruption and labor shortages have spotlighted the need for increased automation. However, many existing solutions are too costly, complex and time-consuming to changeover within highly dynamic manufacturing, warehousing and distribution environments. Southie Autonomy's solution provides fast and flexible automation, creating a turnkey cell that can adapt to fluctuating demands and improve efficiency and margins.
With Southie Autonomy's no-code robotic arm software solution, manufacturers no longer need additional programming and engineering expertise to integrate and manage the automation. The platform utilizes artificial intelligence and augmented reality to automate highly variable contract packaging activities spanning kitting, packing to palletization, enabling daily line changeovers. The robotic arm can be configured within minutes eliminating the setup burden and can operate safely beside workers. The software is compatible with any robotic hardware and is currently being deployed by a handful of customers.
Southie Autonomy, based in the MassRobotics collaboration space in Boston, was founded in 2018 by Draper alumni Rahul Chipalkatty and Jay M. Wong. The capital will help accelerate customer acquisition and build out the network of distribution partners. In addition, Southie Autonomy will scale its operations and expand the commercial and technical team. BootstrapLabs will join the board of Southie Autonomy.
"We are thrilled to have investors that are pioneers in understanding how AI is changing our world and their support will enable Southie Autonomy to scale rapidly. Our mission is to unlock the potential of robotic automation, removing the long-established barriers to adoption, cost, and complexity. Supply chain providers and manufacturers now have a turnkey solution to help overcome labor challenges."
Rahul Chipalkatty, Founder & CEO, Southie Autonomy
“Until now, it was very expensive and complex to reprogram robots to perform different tasks, causing the automation ROI to plummet. With Southie's innovative AI-powered robotic automation platform, it only takes minutes, and no coding is required. This is a pivotal moment for the industry, and with its Robot-as-a-Service ('RaaS') business model, Southie is poised to accelerate the adoption of collaborative robots across new industries and types of organizations.”
Benjamin Levy, Co-Founder & General Partner, BootstrapLabs
About Southie Autonomy
Southie Autonomy has developed an easy-to-use robot arm solution for automating packaging assembly, palletization and kitting. The innovative AI/AR platform creates a program for the robot to follow, enabling it to pick up objects of varying shapes and sizes. No coding, engineering, or highly trained experts are necessary, enabling any operator to instruct a robot to perform packaging assembly within minutes using only simple gestures. Learn more about Southie Autonomy here and connect on Twitter and LinkedIn.
BootstrapLabs is a leading Venture Capital firm based in Silicon Valley and focused on Applied Artificial Intelligence. The firm invests in mission-driven founders who want to shape a better future by applying artificial intelligence to solve some of the world's most important and valuable opportunities in sectors such as Future of Work, Mobility, Cyber, Health, Finance, Energy and Climate. BootstrapLabs is often the first institutional capital and acts as a lead investor at the early stages, with follow-on capital for the later stages. Founded by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs, the firm has built a large community of Applied AI experts, founders, and executives to support its portfolio companies, and strives to be the most helpful and strategic investor, from product-market fit advisory to recruiting, business development, go-to-market strategy, and fundraising. Learn more at www.bootstraplabs.com
About Ocean Azul
Based in South Florida, Ocean Azul Partners is an early-stage venture capital firm passionate about helping entrepreneurs develop innovative technology solutions. Ocean Azul primarily focuses on B2B software and deep tech companies that have early traction and clear differentiation. They invest in companies that are either solving new challenges created by emerging technologies and trends or are focusing on established industries that are ripe for disruption. What differentiates this team is their ability to use their operational experience and networks to support entrepreneurs and scale companies that will shape the futures of their industries. For more information, visit www.oceanazulpartners.com
About kineo finance
kineo finance is a Swiss-headquartered asset financing group with global reach and with subsidiaries in the USA and Germany. kineo provides tailor-made venture leasing and working capital solutions for companies which are starting the commercialization of new products and services with a hardware component. kineo enables young companies to offer their customers product/market-specific "equipment-as-a-service" solutions via pay-per-use, renting or subscription models. Backed by large institutional investors, kineo offers a broad industry network and know-how and actively supports high-growth companies to accelerate the market entry of their innovations.