More than 1,200 of Kiwibot’s adorable delivery robots will soon be roaming 50 college campuses across the U.S. by the end of the year, thanks to a new multimillion-dollar contract with Sodexo and a $7.5 million pre-Series A investment, bringing its total fundraising to $14 million.
“The early success of our Kiwibot partnership has shown that automated delivery is not only possible and reliable, it’s desirable,” said Sarosh Mistry, chair, Sodexo North America. “Sodexo is focused on meeting our clients and consumers where they are, and Kiwibot helps us do that. This year, more students than ever will benefit from autonomous delivery and we’re pleased to be at the forefront of this emerging market.”
Kiwibot also raised a pre-Series A of around $7.5M from five investors, bringing its total raised so far to $14M. One of the investors is Sodexo, which are doubling down on their efforts to implement safe, convenient foodservice solutions. Two other lead investors, Headline and
House of Lithium, are dedicated to driving the future of smart university campuses. This funding will go towards developing further technology and expanding the robot’s reach across multiple college campuses and cities.
“As Kiwibot has both cash and contracts in hand, we really appreciate being chosen to help them negotiate with manufacturers, speed up the manufacturing process for the next Kiwibot generation, and open up Asia’s markets for the robots,” said Joseph Huang, partner at Headline.
“We couldn’t be more excited to be a part of the Kiwibot journey. It has a rockstar team, cutting-edge technology, and an amazing partner in Sodexo. Kiwibot will revolutionize the last mile delivery business,” said Andy DeFrancesco, chairman of the board, House of Lithium.
Due to the well-established partnership between Kiwibot and Sodexo, spring 2022 is expected to begin with Kiwibots rolling in 10 campuses, a breakthrough to reach the goal of 50 locations this year. To date, robotic last-mile deliveries have been successfully taking place in New Mexico State University, Loyola Marymount University, and Gonzaga University as well as in various places in Washington D.C., which demonstrates the increasing potential of this business.
With its semi-autonomous robots, Kiwibot offers in-field customer support and integration with any business’s point-of-sale to distribute food products, without high commission rates for food delivery services. College students can use their meal plans from Sodexo to enjoy Kiwibot’s delivery service.
“We have been intensely working in the robotic food delivery field for the last five years, and this funding will allow us to expand the business at the speed that the market is demanding,” said Felipe Chávez Cortés, the CEO and co-founder of Kiwibot. “We are set to build the most advanced robot delivery fleet: building 100 robots a month, expanding to exciting locations, and connecting with new partners, universities, and cities to advance safe and equitable mobility with zero-emission solutions.”