Beijing based Gaoxian Automation Technology Development, maker of Gaussian Robotics, has raised 150 million yuan (USD $22M) in funding in its Series B+ financing round. The company raised funds in a Series A round of venture capital financing in May 2018 and conducted a Series B round in March 2019, bringing their total funding to date to 250 million yuan ($36M) [source: Crunchbase].
The Series B+ was supported by BlueRun Ventures, Broad Vision Fund and China Capital Management.
Gaussian Robotics Delivers Cleaning Robots
The company has a product line of commercial floor scrubbing and sweeping robots that have been on the market since 2013. The company claims to be the first commercial floor cleaning robot to offer robotic cleaning solutions using simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) technology. Using SLAM for localization is critical for applications such as floor cleaning because you essentially want to drive over the entire floor area without missing a spot and you’re not going to outfit the facility with other navigational options such as magnetic/painting tape, QR codes or fiducials. The cleaning equipment also operates in the same space as humans, so it needs to be safe and be able to replan its path if something is in its way. SLAM fits all of these requirements.
The company currently offers six products. The Ecobot Scrubber 75 series are scrubbing robots good at removing grease both indoors and outdoors, while the Ecobot Scrubber 50 series are fully automated scrubbing machines for indoor tasks and are capable of medical-grade disinfection. The Ecobot Polistar 60 series are indoor polishing robots for stone maintenance, while the Ecobot Sweep Vacuum Mini is an autonomous sweeper for multi-story buildings. The Ecobot Sweeper 111 is an outdoor sweeping machine, while the Ecodrive Sweeper G2 is an outdoor unmanned cleaning vehicle.
The parent company, Gaoxian Automation, has it’s own factory in China and commercial sales have grown in recent years up to a maximum annual rate of 400% per year. The company has installed its cleaning robots many of the largest commercial properties in China. It’s here that the cleaning robots have recorded a combined total of over 100 million kilometers since the first units shipped.
Chief executive officer, Cheng Haotian, came up with the idea when he realized that floor cleaning was a repetitive process and one that is especially fit for automation. This sector is experiencing labor shortages as workers retire.