Horticultural robotics company offers exciting investment opportunity - Fruit & Vine

Horticultural robotics company offers exciting investment opportunity

Fox Robotics, the makers of Hugo RT, an autonomous robot that supports fruit pickers by transporting produce and empty trays on farms, are welcoming investments from visionary farmers and individual investors to help fund the rollout of their new technology within the next six months.

Hugo RT robot from Fox Robotics.

Founded in 2017, the company aspires to solve labour challenges in agriculture and horticulture by increasing efficiency and productivity on farms.

Their innovative Hugo RT robot has been designed to operate in fields and polytunnels and has many uses, including delivering empty trays, collecting and weighing picked produce and transporting to mobile collection points.

With the farm’s logistics operations automated, workers can focus on the more complex task of picking delicate fruit, resulting in more produce being picked each day. This in turn leads to reduced waste, increased profits and improves staff well-being.

By implementing Hugo RT, the company claims growers can achieve a 20% increase in overall productivity. The robot’s advanced safety features make it reliable when working around humans, while its weatherproof design allows it to work uninterrupted all year round.

Focusing exclusively on agritech in the last 3 years, Fox Robotics has secured significant investment from individuals and organisations that has led to the development of its cutting-edge robot, including funding from the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and EIS investors.

Last year, FSE (Funding Scaleup Enterprises) and several Henley Business Angels (HBA) have invested into Fox Robotics, as they believe in the business, the people and the technology.

Paul Lyristis, senior fund manager at the FSE Group, which manages the Enterprise M3 Growth Fund on behalf of the LEP, commented: “We were extremely impressed by Fox Robotics’ knowledge and passion. Not just in terms of technology but also their resolve to work closely with existing data and procedures, integrating their robots into systems rather than overhauling current processes.

“There is no other company taking on the challenge of helping fruit farmers utilise robots out in the field in this way. Exciting times lay ahead for the team and the future of agritech thanks to Fox Robotics.”

Meanwhile, all of the HBAs who invested into the business are also repeat investors, with some being active member and board advisors of the company. Jurek Sikorski, founder and director of HBA, added: “Fox Robotics had attracted considerable interest from members and guests of Henley Business Angels.

“Seeing the robot at work and how it can save time and money, as well as collect valuable data, was very persuasive. We expect Fox Robotics to make significant inroads into a growing market at a time when labour shortages are a serious issue.”

The company are now looking to raise funds for their commercialisation round and bring on expertise from the farming community. Their hope is to work closely with individuals interested in novel technology and farmers who are open to implementing automation on their farm to help to improve efficiencies and productivity.

If you’re interested in investing in the future or want to give this novel technology a try, contact Fox Robotics business development manager Alejandra Acevedo by emailing Alejandra.acevedo@fox-robotics.com.

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