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Spot rival: Swiss robotics startup ANYbotics takes a leap forward with $50M for its revolutionary quadrupedal robot ANYmal

ANYbotics funding
Photo credit: ANYbotics

Spot, the renowned yellow dog robot by Boston Dynamics, has become a household name with its hefty price tag of $74,500, putting it in the realm of luxury cars. But now, a Swiss contender has emerged to challenge its dominance.

ANYbotics, a leading robotics company based in Switzerland, is making waves in the industry with its latest creation: ANYmal. This autonomous quadrupedal robot is designed to navigate challenging terrains and carry out a range of tasks, showcasing the company’s expertise in developing advanced robotic systems.

Raises $50M investment

In a recent development, the Swiss robotic startup has secured $50 million in Series B funding in a round led by international deep tech investors Walden Catalyst (that backed Peptone and Revea) and NGP Capital with participation from Bessemer Venture Partners (that invested in DriveNets), Aramco Ventures, Swisscom Ventures, Swisscanto Private Equity, and other existing investors.

The investment comes as demand for robotic solutions surges in heavy industries such as oil & gas, chemicals, power, mining, metals and minerals, and utilities. ANYbotics will use the funds to scale deployments internationally, fuel the development of new capabilities, and solidify its position in robotic inspection solutions.

ANYmal: the four-legged robot!

ANYbotics was founded in 2016 by a group of robotics experts and researchers – Péter Fankhauser, Marco Hutter, and Hannes Sommer, from the Autonomous Systems Lab at ETH Zurich. The company’s flagship product is the ANYmal robot is equipped with advanced sensors, including cameras, LiDAR, and inertial sensors, enabling it to perceive its surroundings and navigate autonomously.

The ANYmal robot can be used for inspection, monitoring, and maintenance tasks in environments where it may be challenging or dangerous for humans to access. Further, ANYbotics has set a new industry standard with its revolutionary ANYmal X platform. Boasting the distinction of being the world’s only ex-proof legged inspection robot, ANYmal X has garnered remarkable attention and secured pre-orders and reservations exceeding $150 million.

Global oil, gas, and chemical companies eagerly participated in the product launch program, and the platform’s capabilities and robust design make it a game-changer in industrial inspections, especially in hazardous environments.

“This funding validates our unique approach to addressing fundamental challenges of operating complex industrial facilities,” said Dr. Péter Fankhauser, Co-Founder and CEO of ANYbotics. “Our legged robots have already proven their value in increasing productivity and safety. With this investment, we will expand internationally and accelerate the development of our robots’ AI capabilities such as manipulation for maintenance work to revolutionise automated industrial operations.”

“We are thrilled to invest in ANYbotics, a pioneering technology originated at ETH Zurich that combines AI and Reinforcement Learning with robotics to create highly robust and autonomous four-legged robots,” said Young Sohn, Managing Partner at Walden Catalyst. “This unique technology allows robots to be easily deployable in complex industrial environments, making it an efficient solution for inspection applications in environments that are dangerous for human beings. Moving forward, we see a significant opportunity to leverage the company’s robust mobility platform and locomotion software stack to enable new use cases and expand their addressable market beyond robotic inspection.”

“We are deeply impressed with the progress ANYbotics has made in achieving early commercial success in key verticals and establishing trust with marquee customers globally,” said Nicolas Autret, Partner at Walden Catalyst. “We are excited to partner with Péter, Fredrik, and the entire team to build the next global leader in robotics.”

“ANYbotics’ state-of-the-art technology coupled with a clear global value proposition is exciting – it enables humans to do what they do best and replace dangerous and repetitive tasks with a fully automated AI-powered robot,” said Christian Noske, Partner at NGP Capital. “We are excited to work together towards large-scale deployments and further internationalisation.”

“At Bessemer Venture Partners, we firmly believe in the transformative potential of robotics companies like ANYbotics, which are not only redefining the market but also creating a significant positive impact on society,” said Alex Ferrara, Partner at Bessemer Venture Partners. “ANYbotics has demonstrated exceptional capabilities in developing innovative robotic solutions that address the growing needs of heavy industries, simultaneously enhancing productivity, worker safety, and environmental sustainability.”

With ANYmal on the horizon, the competition in the field of robotics is heating up. The Swiss innovation is all set to challenge Spot in capabilities and performance, bringing a new wave of robotic technology to the market.

As the battle between these high-tech quadrupedal robots intensifies, we can expect exciting advancements and groundbreaking applications in various industries. Stay tuned for the epic showdown between ANYmal and Spot!

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