Funding the Future of E-Commerce Fulfillment
Updated: Jan 2, 2019
Somehow, each December, the holidays seem to arrive quicker than ever. It’s almost as if the calendar cycle gains momentum as it pushes past fall towards winter. Retailers are experiencing a similar acceleration in the shift from in-store to online shopping. It’s been happening without any signs of leveling off. In fact, the trajectory is pointing to annual increases well into the future. And unless the Internet suddenly breaks, reversing the trend and pushing shoppers back into brick and mortar stores, dollars spent online will only continue to climb upward for years to come.
While the trend sounds like good news for retailers, it also creates pain points in retailer supply chains. For online retailers, timely delivery is essential to keep consumers satisfied and coming back for more. Fulfilling these e-commerce orders is much more labor-intensive compared to traditional retail store restocking based on the number of touches each piece requires. On top of that, the fulfillment centers are located in rural areas where population density is low and the labor pool for warehouse jobs is limited. To solve this labor availability problem, our intelligent piece-picking solution provides a cost-effective way to fill the repetitive, low-skill and hard-to-fill jobs of picking and placing goods during order fulfillment and creating new, highly productive and sustainable roles for people who manage robot fleets.
On our end, we’re thrilled by our customers’ confidence in RightHand Robotics, and at the opportunity to successfully support their operations during this season’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday rushes (known as peak season in the retail industry). The faith retailers have placed in our picking solution has resulted in a new round of funding led by Menlo Ventures, adding GV (formerly known as Google Ventures) to our team of investors and including previous backers, such as Playground Global, Matrix Partners, Dream Incubator, and Seven Seas Partners. In addition to this infusion of funding, new members have also joined RightHand’s board of directors, including robotics industry pioneer, Mick Mountz, and Mark Siegel, partner at Menlo Ventures, adding a wealth of experience to our team.
RightPick product platform, which is a software-driven, hardware-enabled solution that automates the key material handling task of rapidly and accurately picking individual items for e-commerce order fulfillment. RightPick equips customers with the three keys to robotic piece-picking - range, rate and reliability - which enable retailers to better meet consumers’ demands.
With millions of picks under our RightHand belt, we’re collecting, processing and storing these key data points. Our machine learning team leverages this data set to help RightPick grasp new items using that past experience to constantly increase the range of what can be quickly and reliably picked.
So as we embark on the next phase of our journey, we’re delighted to wrap up the year with all of this good news under our corporate tree. It’s another step forward for RightHand Robotics and our customers, solving for labor shortages while increasing productivity and getting consumers what they want, when and where they want it. And as we head into the next season with the wind at our backs, we don’t see any of this slowing down. In fact, acceleration is inevitable. And we’re all for that.