Startups using robotic technology to operate tiny urban fulfillment centers are now directly partnering with retailers to speed up last-mile delivery. We dig in below.
This fall, grocery retailer Albertsons partnered with warehousing robotics startup Takeoff Technologies to pilot a small urban fulfillment center. It is the first partnership of its kind with a nationwide grocer.
Takeoff Technologies bets on the rise of “micro-fulfillment.” Micro-fulfillment focuses on leveraging software, AI, and robotics to operate small urban warehouses.
By placing warehouses in urban areas near consumers, retailers can ease the cost of last-mile delivery — a battleground in the grocery space as retailers increasingly move toward online delivery.
Takeoff Technologies is not alone.
In fall 2018, Israel-based CommonSense Robotics partnered with Israel’s Iargest drugstore chain Super-Pharm to pilot its micro-fulfillment technology. The startup is also reportedly working with US grocery retailers to open 5 micro-fulfillment installations in the US in 2019. Like Takeoff, CommonSense develops robotic technology that can operate in small urban warehouses.
Read more on micro-fulfillment and why it matters to retailers here.
This report was created with data from CB Insights’ emerging technology insights platform, which offers clarity into emerging tech and new business strategies through tools like:
- Earnings Transcripts Search Engine & Analytics to get an information edge on competitors’ and incumbents’ strategies
- Patent Analytics to see where innovation is happening next
- Company Mosaic Scores to evaluate startup health, based on our National Science Foundation-backed algorithm
- Business Relationships to quickly see a company’s competitors, partners, and more
- Market Sizing Tools to visualize market growth and spot the next big opportunity