Harvest Automation, Inc., which develops mobile, autonomous robots that provide material handling solutions to the nursery and greenhouse industries, recently announced it has sold its robotic warehouse automation technology and business to focus on robotic material handling in a variety of agriculture markets.
The company, which has deployed more than 150 robots to more than 30 of the nation’s largest growers, conceived of and developed a ground-breaking robotic system for e-commerce order fulfillment over the last year and a half. The company had completed a small fleet of robots that demonstrated a three-fold increase in order picking efficiency. Ultimately, it was decided that commercializing the warehouse product would be better accomplished by a group with a background and exclusive focus in that sector. NextShift Robotics, Inc. purchased all of the warehouse-related material assets and IP in a deal that closed April 5, 2016.
“Agriculture is where we started and have found our greatest success,” says Charles Grinnell, CEO and co-founder of Harvest Automation. “The sale allows us to restructure and refocus the company on robotic innovation to resolve important challenges facing the agriculture industry like labor and environmental impact. We are very excited to not only support and grow our current customer base, but to continue our work in new markets with vegetable and fruit growers.”