SRI Blog

Growing the Bay Area Robotics Scene: Nine Companies to Watch

Silicon Valley Robotics (SVR) recently held its first Investor Breakfast at SRI headquarters in Menlo Park, with kudos from attending investors and the 10 participating early-stage companies. Part of SVR’s mission is to help nurture early-stage robotics companies in the greater Silicon Valley area.

Both a growing list of start-up robotics companies in the Bay Area and a growing number of venture capitalists, investment angels, and individuals are interested in investing in robotics. What’s needed is a forum to connect the companies with investors.

Through events like the Investor Breakfast, SVR will also begin to build more experience with robotics entrepreneurs on the team qualifications and value propositions needed to meet the criteria of the venture community.

At the same time, more investors will become familiar with the business challenges and resources needed to be successful in robotics.

Big opportunities exist in emerging personal and service robot applications—but going after them is not for the faint of heart (or faint of amazing technical and business savvy).

Presenting companies to watch include:

  • Redwood Robotics (an SRI joint venture)—low-cost robot arms to serve the emerging service robot market. Contact: stefan.nusser [at] redwoodrobotics.com (Stefan Nusser), CEO

  • Grabit, Inc. (another SRI spin-off)—materials solutions to transform efficiencies for logistics, distribution, and material handling. Contact: charlie.duncheon [at] grabitinc.com (Charlie Duncheon), CEO

  • Willow Garage—applying its talent and know-how to meet real needs in personal care markets from assisted living to the home. Contact: cousins [at] willowgarage.com (Steve Cousins), CEO

  • Momentum Machines—bringing high-quality burgers to the masses. Contact: alex [at] momentummachines.com (Alex Vardakostas), CEO

  • Mighty Carma—modular car tracking. Contact: sp [at] mightycarma.com (Saurabh Palan), founder

  • Robot App Store—an open market for robot platforms and application developers. Contact: elad [at] robotappstore.com (Elad Inbar), CEO

  • Revolve Robotics—Kubi desktop telepresence. Contact: marcus [at] revolverobotics.com (Marcus Rosenthal)

  • Barobo—reconfigurable, easy-to-use education robot platform. Contact: gryland [at] barobo.com (Graham Ryland), founder

  • Sun Synchrony—specialized sun tracking solar energy. Contact: m.perlin [at] sunsynchrony.com (Mark Perlin)

SRI was happy to host the event. Check in with Silicon Valley Robotics for more events like this one and to stay in touch with the growing robotics scene in the Greater San Francisco Bay Area.

Rich Mahoney, director of SRI's Robotics Program, is current president of the Silicon Valley Robotics professional association.

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Esquadrias

1. A robot may not injure a human being or, thurogh inaction, allow a human being to come to harm. 2. A robot must obey orders given to it by human beings except where such orders would conflict with the First Law. 3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.