UK based SLAMcore closes a $5M (USD) funding round to help it meet growing demand for AI based spatial and localization software solutions. The SLAMcore solutions enables both autonomous mobile robots and drones to better understand the world around them, fusing information from the onboard sensors.
The funding round was led by Octopus Ventures and MMC Ventures, with participation from Amadeus Capital Partners and Toyota AI Ventures. Since it's founding in 2016, this round brings the total investment to $10M (USD).
We interviewed SLAMcore CEO Owen Nicholson at the TechCrunch Sessions Robotics+AI, on March 3, 2020 in Berkeley CA. Nicholson was at the event to pitch the SLAMcore solution. SLAMcore essentually integrates information coming from all of the various sensors, including vision, inertial and wheel odometry. LIDAR data is on their roadmap. Their go-to-market is primarily with hardware partners (i.e. AMR and Drone hardware companies).
The new funding will enable SLAMcore to meet the increasing demand for AMRs and drones grows in response to the COVID crisis. The "spatial intelligence" provided by SLAMcore enables robots to answer the question: "Where am I"? This is critical for AMRs and drones that are navigating autonomously. "Getting lost' is a common problem for autonomous solutions, and can be frustrating for AMR operations.
Owen Nicholson, CEO at SLAMcore, says: “Even before the crisis, SLAMcore was engaged in many conversations with companies - big and small - who needed a better way to solve spatial intelligence issues in robotics. Especially across sectors such as drones, robots, and AR/VR, the coronavirus pandemic has lit the touch-paper and we are primed to meet exploding demand. In the past few weeks alone, we have seen a huge spike in inquiries as robotics companies want fast solutions to get their robots to market sooner.”
Mina Samaan, Principal at MMC Ventures, says: “We are very excited by the advancements in next generation software platforms used to drive the future of robotics. The ability to locate and map in real-time is still unsolved in the vast majority of autonomous designs. Therefore, affordable SLAM delivered as-a-service at scale is fundamental to unlocking the adoption of self-driving robots across all indoor and outdoor applications including agriculture, warehousing and last-mile delivery."
Zoe Chambers, Principal at Octopus Ventures, says: “In a post pandemic world, where contactless and hygienic interactions are vital, demand for robotic solutions will only increase. Whether they’re moving around warehouses, delivering food, disinfecting hospitals or operating as security guards, robots will be interacting with multiple dynamic environments and even with humans. This means that their ability to move autonomously is absolutely fundamental. SLAMcore’s solution lies at the heart of this by giving robots spatial intelligence and we are excited to continue to back the business as the market accelerates.”
The funding will speed up the availability of SLAMcore’s solutions, including its recently announced SDK product, a toolkit that gives developers everything they need to build, test and deploy solutions using SLAMcore algorithms and low-cost, easily available off-the-shelf sensors.
For more information: Press Release
SLAM Core website: https://www.slamcore.com