Simbe Robotics, a leading innovator in the field of inventory robots, announced this week that it has secured $28 million in Series B funding. This follows a $26 million Series A round in late 2019, bringing the company’s total funding to $54 million. The funding round was led by Eclipse.
A New Era of Inventory Management
Inventory management is a prime candidate for automation, given that it essentially involves collecting and managing data at scale. Simbe Robotics’ funding announcement comes amidst a flurry of investment activity in the inventory robot sector. Swiss firm Verity recently raised $11 million, while drone inventory startup B Garage secured $20 million. Gather AI also recently announced the acquisition of competitor Ware.
Simbe Robotics’ Tally robot is designed to monitor store shelves for missing items that may have been replaced or stolen, a task that traditionally involves hours of human labor and store shutdowns. Tally’s ability to dynamically accomplish these tasks can limit the amount of time a shelf remains bare, a significant advantage in the current retail environment marked by supply chain concerns and labor shortages.
Tally: The Front-of-Store Solution
Unlike other firms that focus on back-of-house operations, Simbe Robotics concentrates on front-of-store operations. Tally is designed to cruise up and down store aisles alongside customers, offering retailers a unique opportunity for positive PR with branded robots visible to the public.
Earlier this year, BJ’s Wholesale Club announced that it would be rolling out Simbe’s Tally robots to all of its locations, a testament to the value and efficiency these robots bring to retail operations.
Simbe’s Vision for the Future
Simbe Robotics’ mission is to elevate the retail experience for everyone—retailers, their associates, and customers—through AI and robotics. The recent funding will enable Simbe to share its vision and reimagined experience with more retail partners around the world.
Over the past year, Simbe has serviced 12 of the top 250 global retailers in the Americas, Europe, and the Middle East. It has processed over 12 billion shelf photos, analyzed over 5 billion products for on-shelf availability and price accuracy, and completed over 1.7 million hours of fully autonomous data capture operations alongside store associates and customers.
While the automation of inventory management may raise concerns about job displacement, Simbe emphasizes the human element in its operations. The company’s robots work alongside store associates and customers, highlighting a collaborative approach to automation.
As Simbe Robotics continues to grow and innovate, it is set to redefine the retail experience, making inventory management more efficient and dynamic.