Telexistence Secures US$170 Million Series B Funding from SoftBank and Others

Telexistence Secures US$170 Million Series B Funding from SoftBank and Others

The startup aims to expand its business presence in North America.

Japan, known for its technological prowess, has solidified its position as a dominant force in the robotics industry. With its cutting-edge innovations and precision engineering, Japan has emerged as the world’s largest exporter of robots. While established giants have long commanded attention, a promising Japanese robotics startup, Telexistence (TX), recently made headlines by securing significant funding from none other than SoftBank Group Corp. (SBG).

In a noteworthy Series B funding round, TX successfully raised a substantial $170 million. Existing investors such as Monoful Venture Partners, KDDI Open Innovation Fund and Airbus Ventures participated, but what distinguishes this round is the inclusion of new investors, including SBG, HH-CTBC Partnership (Foxconn Co-GP Fund) and Japan-based venture capital investor Globis Capital Partners (GCP).

Funding and partnerships for expansion

TX, led by CEO Jin Tomioka, has established new partnerships with SoftBank Robotic Group Corp. (SBRG), a subsidiary of SBG, to enhance their global business collaboration and accelerate commercialization in North America. 

SoftBank has a strong track record of investing in robotics and has shown great enthusiasm in this field. It previously supported Bear Robotics in California in 2020 and have made investments through the SoftBank Vision Fund 2 in Keenon Robotics, a Shanghai-based company focused on service robots, as well as Opentrons, a developer of medical testing robots.

Additionally, the startup will collaborate with Foxconn to establish production technology and conduct mass production for its next-generation model, known as “GHOST”. As a result of the funding, SoftBank Robotics Group’s Kenichi Kent Yoshida and Globis Capital Partners’ Ryohei Nomoto will join as newly appointed directors.

From R&D to commercial success

Founded in 2017, TX has made remarkable progress, transitioning from research and development and small-scale robot prototypes to deploying many of its robots in real-world settings beyond factory environments. In a significant partnership announced in 2021, TX successfully deployed its robots in 300 FamilyMart stores, a prominent convenience store chain in Japan, demonstrating the practical application of its technology in a dynamic retail environment.

“With the proud backing of our new partners SBG and Foxconn, TX increases its commitment to accelerate the rapid expansion of its existing robot operations and drive the development of robots with human-level versatility, which is the goal of anyone involved in robotics,” said Jin Tomioka, CEO of TX.

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