Butler Robot. (Source: GreyOrange)

Peter Thiel, Ajay Royan’s Firm Backs Warehousing Robotics Startup GreyOrange

GreyOrange raised $140 million in a round led by Silicon Valley investors Peter Thiel and Ajay Royan’s Mithril Capital as the warehousing robotics startup plans to enter the U.S. market.

Flipkart co-founder Binny Bansal along with existing investors, including Blume Ventures, also participated in the largest fundraise by an Indian hardware startup, according to the company statement. The funds will be used for research and development and for developing the supply chain system, Co-Founder Akash Gupta said.

The startup, which operates from Singapore and Gurugram, is setting up its U.S. headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia and an R&D centre in Boston, Massachusetts. The company said it will deploy 740 robots in Atlanta and aims to add 20,000 in the U.S. in the next five years—the home turf for Amazon robotics. The Jeff Bezos-led retail giant drove automation in the U.S. warehousing industry after acquiring Kiva Systems in a $775-million deal in 2012.

GreyOrgane is also looking to expand operations across Asia and Europe. Founded in 2011, GreyOrange handles warehousing for e-commerce firms like Myntra, Flipkart and Pepperfry. It deploys artificially intelligent robots that can automate routine tasks at warehouses and fulfillment centres to improve efficiency and reduce operational costs.

GreyOrange has two flagship products—Butler and Sorter. Butler is a storage and retrieval robot that moves on warehouse floors and Sorter is a conveyor belt system fitted with robotic arms. It also launched The Butler PickPal, an automated picking system.

Also read: Now Robots Are Coming After India’s Low-Cost Labour