Dishcraft Robotics, a US provider of commercial dishwashing and dishware delivery services powered by AI and robotics, has raised US$20m in new funding.
The Series A1 round was led by new investor Grit Ventures and included returning investors First Round Capital, Baseline Ventures, Fuel Capital, and Lemnos.
To date, Dishcraft, based in San Carlos, California, has raised US$46m in venture funding.
Marc Randolph, co-founder and former CEO of Netflix, and Kelly Coyne, founder and partner at Grit Ventures, will join Dishcraft’s board of directors.
The startup said it will use the new investment to expand its daily dish delivery service to include reusable takeaway containers and utensils, thereby filling a growing need caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
This will enable foodservice operators such as cafeterias, caterers, and restaurants to offer diners individually portioned takeaway meals in reusable containers that meet health guidelines for sanitisation and hygiene.
Coyne said: “Even pre-Covid, Dishcraft was on track to be a significant force of disruption in the world of food services.
“In recent years, robotics has introduced major operational improvements in traditional industry.
In particular, firms like Dishcraft that leverage RaaS [Robotics-as-a-Service] have been able to rapidly gain traction and sell effortlessly into long-stagnant industries.”
Dishcraft Daily is a sustainable dishware delivery service powered by Dishcraft’s purpose-built robotic dishwashers that can autonomously clean and sanitise tens of thousands of dishes every day.
Similar to a linen service, Dishcraft delivers plates, bowls, cups, and utensils each day throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
Dishcraft then collects and returns dirty wares to its dishwashing hub where robots use sensors, computer vision, AI, UV lighting, and mechanics to autonomously sort, scrub, inspect, and rack dishware.
Designed to spot minuscule particles invisible to the human eye, each plate is inspected multiple times and washed until entirely clean.
The technology uses small amounts of cold water and a fraction of the energy of typical dishwashers.
Linda Pouliot, CEO and founder of Dishcraft, said: “The pandemic has put the spotlight on the absolute necessity for hygienic foodservice, and, with our solution, foodservice operators do not need to give up sustainability to achieve that goal.”
Dishcraft said it will expand the size of its dishwashing hub in San Carlos, California as well as add reusable takeaway containers to its daily dishware delivery service.
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