Warehouse robotics startups that are revolutionizing retail

According to Verified Market Research (VMR), the warehouse robotics industry was valued at $4.5 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach $15 billion by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 14.5. %.

Three forces have led to this incredible growth:

  1. Automation technology has grown to become the top technology trend according to McKinsey. The global industrial automation market is expected to grow from $200 billion in 2022 to $400 billion by 2029 growing at a CAGR of 9.8% (Fortune Business insights).

  2. Covid-19 has created huge growth for e-commerce businesses. According to ARTS, e-commerce sales grew 43% in 2020, the first year of the pandemic, from $570 billion in 2019 to $815 billion in 2020.

  3. After Covid-19, many sectors that pay low wages struggled to find employees. Companies that provide warehousing services clearly fall into this category. In the United States, the Department of Labor suggests that there are now multiple warehouse positions per applicant.

The three market forces have created a growing need for efficient warehousing and inventory management systems. Major players in the e-commerce market such as Amazon and Walmart have started using bots in an effort to combat employee shortages and growing demand. Amazon, for example, recently invested in Israeli autonomous robot maker BionicHIVE.

These five Israeli startups are among those aiming to revolutionize the retail warehousing space:

  • Product: SqUID is an automated warehouse solution offering a synchronized and autonomous robotic fleet with 3D motion capabilities. A high-end integrated control system and intelligent real-time data analysis allow BionicHIVE’s algorithmic engine to dynamically learn issues created in a warehouse and apply resolutions to all warehouses in the network.

  • Year of creation: 2014

  • Funding: Undisclosed amount from Amazon

  • Founders: Ilan Reingold, Timer Amit, Liran Raizer

  • BionicHive modernizes its solution, SqUID, on existing infrastructure. Its autonomous robots move in 3D along rails attached to warehouse racks. In April, the company received funding from Amazon’s new Industrial Innovation Fund aimed at investing in emerging technologies. The size of the investment was not disclosed.

  • Product: Caja Robotics uses software and robots to implement automation technology in standard warehouses. The system is designed to improve the efficiency of e-commerce retailers who need fast delivery.

  • Year of creation: 2014

  • Funding: $12 million

  • Founders: Ilan Cohen, Guy Glass, Tamar Ingber, Reuven Della-Torre

  • Binyamina-based Caja Robotics offers a warehouse logistics solution that can fit into existing infrastructure. Its system consists of two robots: a lifting robot for optimizing storage and replenishment and a trolley robot for picking and transporting boxes. The company boasts that its solution can increase storage capacity by 50% while increasing throughput by 40%.

  • Product: A logistics platform creating multi-tenant private networks of automated micro-distribution centers that position automation in physical proximity to end customers.

  • Year of creation: 2015

  • Funding: $336 million

  • Founders: Ori Avraham, Shay Cohen, Elram Goren, Eyal Goren

  • Fabric has 2 solutions, one for e-commerce and one for grocery and has 180 employees worldwide. Basically, Fabric offers tiny automated hubs allowing retailers to store their goods in the heart of cities while enjoying the efficiency of automation. As of October, Fabric has been valued at unicorn status at over $1 billion. Just recently, the company announced its intention to focus its efforts on a new model that will offer companies a software and hardware product allowing them to manage operations themselves. In his previous model, Fabric set up warehouses and operated them for businesses.

  • Product: The company develops a patented robotic picking technology with a unique autonomous Pick & Pack integrated system.

  • Year of creation: 2021

  • Funding: Bootstrapped

  • Founders: Amir Shapiro, Prof. Elon Rimon, Yoav Golan

  • Pickcommerce offers a patented adhesive gripping method that can reach around 90% of all e-commerce items (current methods offer around 40%). They are currently working on their second patent.

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