Pickle Robot Company, a provider of AI-enabled robotic automation systems for truck unloading, announced that it has live pilot implementations unloading tens of thousands of packages per month at customer sites in the greater Los Angeles area.
The company has also raised $26 million in Series A funding led by Ranpak, JS Capital, Schusterman Family Investments, Catapult Ventures and Soros Capital.
In addition, Pickle Robot has expanded its executive team with growth-oriented industry veterans to accelerate the commercialization of the company’s flagship robotic unloading systems.
Founded in 2018, Pickle Robot tackled a range of warehouse challenges using industrial robots powered by core AI software, computer vision and advanced sensors. Today, the company is focused on applying its technology to one of the most labour-intensive, physically demanding, and highest-revenue work areas in logistics: truck unloading.
United Exchange Corporation (UEC) is an early customer using the Pickle Robot Unload System. UEC manufactures, sources and distributes high-quality private label and licensed consumer goods and groceries that are sold by retailers around the world. At UEC’s distribution center in Southern California, the Pickle Robot Unload System handles appropriate bottom-loading ocean freight containers alongside UEC employees who unload other trailers at the facility using traditional manual methods.
“Pickle robots really do unload trucks or, in our case, sea freight containers,” said Tom Blaylock, operations manager at United Exchange Corporation. “Pickle has been a great partner to work with. We have seen their technology improve month-on-month in handling our different product types and pack sizes, and their team works closely with our on-site staff to ensure the day-to-day work is done on time and to quality standards.”
Pickle will use the funding to accelerate time-to-market and strengthen deployment capabilities. Omar Asali, Chairman and CEO of Ranpak, has joined Pickle’s Board of Directors as part of the Investment Agreement. Following this Series A investment round, the company has raised a total of nearly $32 million to date. Previous investors who participated in this funding round included Toyota AI Ventures, Third Kind Venture Capital, Hyperplane Ventures, BoxGroup and Version One Ventures.
“Unloading cargo from trucks and containers is a difficult, sometimes dangerous and always arduous task that is performed in thousands of locations every day,” Asali said. “Operators around the world are struggling to fill positions for this type of work and Pickle is delivering a true robotic unloading system that can help fill the workforce gap plaguing the logistics industry.”
To accelerate the company’s commercialization phase, Pickle has added Mike Donikian, Vice President of Product and Product Operations, and Pete Blair, Vice President of Marketing and Sales to his executive team. Donikian brings a wealth of experience from his previous roles at Pickle where he launched and built exceptional teams and products for Wayfair, Amazon Robotics, Amazon Pay and Alexa. Blair brings go-to-market strategy and execution from his previous positions as director of marketing at Berkshire Grey, Applause App Quality and Kiva Systems/Amazon Robotics.
“Customer interest in Pickle unloading systems has been incredible, and now that we have brought our first unloading systems out of the lab and into customer operations, we have a clear path to widespread commercialization,” said AJ Meyer, founder and CEO of Pickle Robot Company . “The early customer deployments, funding, and leadership roles are positioning us to accelerate customer acquisition and build the enterprise infrastructure we need to ship more systems to more customers in the coming months.”