Agility's robot, Digit. It's technology originated at Oregon State.
Agility Robotics, a Corvallis-based company that makes robots that walk like a person, reported $150 million in new investment Friday, a whopping sum the company hopes will accelerate the arrival of robots in the workplace.
Using technology originally developed at Oregon State University, Agility has developed robots that walk on two legs, climb stairs, carry and stack objects, and operate indoors and out. The company said its most advanced robot will begin working for customers later in 2022.
“Unprecedented consumer and corporate demand have created an extraordinary need for robots to support people in the workplace,” Agility CEO Damion Shelton said in a statement Friday. “With this investment, Agility can ramp up the delivery of robots to fill roles where there’s an unmet need.”
While Shelton works in Pennsylvania, Agility’s manufacturing and most other operations are in Corvallis. The company has 95 employees, 72 of them in Oregon. Oregon State holds a small stake in the business and continues to collaborate with Agility on research.
Founded in 2015, Agility has raised $180 million in funding altogether and says the latest investment will enable it to double its workforce.
Backers announced Friday include Silicon Valley investment firms DCVC and Playground Global. Amazon contributed an unspecified sum through its new Amazon Industrial Innovation Fund, which seeks to back technologies that improve logistics and the supply chain.
Friday’s $150 million round is among the largest investments in an Oregon startup. The state’s entrepreneurial ecosystem received a jolt last year with public offerings from four companies — Dutch Bros, Expensify, Vacasa and ESS Tech.
And Oregon startup investment hit an all-time high in 2021, topping $1 billion for the first time.
— Mike Rogoway | mrogoway@oregonian.com | Twitter: @rogoway | 503-294-7699
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