Kitchen robot Botinkit raises $13M from DJI angel and others | TechCrunch

News Summary

  • But another key selling point of its robots is their ability to facilitate restaurants’ cross-regional expansion, Chen said in an interview with TechCrunch.One of the major hurdles that restaurants encounter when expanding is finding and training a large number of staff, which can slow down their growth.
  • Ko is also an investor in Botinkit.While Botinkit sees California-based Miso Robotics as a potential competitor, the companies are augmenting different sets of cooking skills.Miso’s burger-flipping robots have helped it ink deals with chain giants like Jack in the Box and White Castle.
  • It’s an incredibly exciting prospect.”Botinkit’s current robots come with temperature sensors, but the startup is allocating a portion of its new funding toward developing multimodal sensors that can also detect flavors and smells.
  • Its robots have been cooking at food stalls inside Walmart’s locations in China and Delibowl in Singapore.The article was updated on July 20, 2023, to correct the spelling of Ko Ping-Keung and clarify Botinkit serves Delibowl in Singapore.Want the top robotics news in your inbox each week?
  • Even if they manage to recruit enough personnel, maintaining consistent quality control can be challenging in new markets.A typical 100-square-meter kitchen requires six to 10 staff members, according to Chen, but with Botinkit’s robots, that headcount can be cut to just one or two.
  • HKUST, where Chen studied, has emerged as a hub for hardware innovation, with students turning their academic research into commercial ideas.Meanwhile, Li and his investment partner Ko Ping-Keung, also an HKUST professor, have been supporting their students with funding and other resources.
Having worked in the food industry for several years, Shirley Chen saw firsthand the challenges of managing staffing and training for restaurant expansion. So when she met her future cofounders, she [+3838 chars]