August 30, 2019
According to a TechCrunch article, Bear Robotics is raising $35M in investment and has already raised $10M towards that goal. This additional $35M funding comes on top of an existing $3.8M investment (according to CrunchBase).
Bear Robotics makes an autonomous mobile robot which helps to automate front of house restaurant operations. The 25 person company has just released version 2 of their robot product called "Penny".
Robots at Your Service (and as a Service)
Core to Bear Robotics business model is the idea that they offer Penny in a Robots as a Service (RaaS) business model. For the restaurateur, this means that you don't purchase (nor own) the robot, rather you pay for Penny's service as it's used. But this also means that you don't have to pay for servicing the robot if it breaks down and neither do you have to train anyone on your staff to program the robot. All of this is included in Penny's monthy service fee.
We believe that deploying Penny in a Robots as a Service business model make perfect sense for the restaurant market. Restaurant owners don't want to deal with the hassles of learning to program and maintain robots. So RaaS is a great way for any restuarant owner to automate front of house operations quickly and easily. Bear Robotics CEO John Ha knows first hand about the restaurant business as he tried his hand at starting a restaurant before he realized just how difficult it can be. As a result, he applied his technology background to launching Bear Robotics and creating a solution to help other restaurateurs succeed.
With Bear Robotics business growing quickly, as with other RaaS robotics providers, they now need lots of capital to build out their robot fleet that will be deployed into the field. Bear Robotics is also on a hiring spree with many openings for field personnel to install and maintain their fleet. All of this is a good sign for Bear Robotics as they have moved beyond their initial pilot installations and are starting to grow their business. Bear Robotics has deployed their solution in both the US and in Asia.