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Soft Robotics designs and builds soft robotic gripping systems and automation solutions that can grasp and manipulate items of varying size, shape and weight. Today, the company is a global enterprise solving previously off-limits automation challenges for customers in food & beverage, advanced manufacturing and e-commerce. Soft Robotics’ engineers are building an ecosystem of robots, control systems, data and machine learning to enable the workplace of the future.

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6 River Systems and Soft Robotics Announce Strategic Partnership

POSTED 09/06/2019

6 River Systems logo Create first end-to-end mobile picking solution for e-commerce and retail, offering live demo at CSCMP EDGE 2019

BEDFORD, Mass. & WALTHAM, Mass. - 6 River Systems, Inc. (6RS) and Soft Robotics today announced a strategic partnership to deliver an automated picking solution for e-commerce and retail warehouses. The solution combines 6 River Systems’ automated collaborative mobile robot, Chuck, with Soft Robotics’ disruptive, full stack bin picking and order fulfillment solution, SuperPick. With Chuck’s ease of implementation and SuperPick’s ability to handle the largest range of SKUs without the need for prior robot training, the fully integrated system is the first commercially available end-to-end mobile picking solution. The two companies will provide live demonstrations of their innovation Sept. 15-18 during CSCMP EDGE 2019 in Anaheim, Calif.

To keep pace with rising consumer demands and a declining labor supply, manufacturers and warehouse operators are increasingly turning to robotic automation. The benefits of bringing robotic automation to a $6 billion global warehouse market include improved business efficiencies across the warehouse, as well as the ability to better support the current workforce so they can focus on more strategic tasks and initiatives. Unlike ad hoc technology combinations, this integrated solution may bring transformative productivity gains of up to 2-3x to existing warehouses and fulfillment center installations.

“The partnership between 6 River Systems and Soft Robotics is an excellent illustration of combinatorial innovation at the intelligent operational system level. It confirms the accelerating shift of robotics use-cases from ‘the point of activity’ to ‘a place of innovation’,” remarked Remy Glaisner, Research Director, IDC. “It also keeps strengthening the application of robotics beyond incremental task improvement and aligns with pressing strategic enterprise considerations such as labor market challenges.”

Jerome Dubois, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, 6RS, sees the partnership with Soft Robotics as one way the company can meet the dynamic needs of e-commerce and retail customers: “This solution will allow customers to fully automate the picking process for high-demand products, thereby enabling warehouse employees to focus on higher impact operations. The combined capabilities of Chuck and SuperPick will expand capacity, enabling more orders to be completed with greater accuracy and speed.”

Previously, robotic solutions deployed in the warehouse environment burdened the customer with the added costs and complexities of SKU training and deep learning methods, delaying deployment and ROI. This combined solution from 6RS and Soft Robotics removes the barriers associated with these high costs and delivers an easily deployed solution into existing infrastructure.

Carl Vause, CEO of Soft Robotics, sees the combined solution as a key offering to organizations that are struggling with staffing shortages: “I speak with customers nearly every day that are struggling with peak efficiency as a result of their inability to hire workers. The integration of mobile material transport systems and goods to robot order fulfillment systems will help to address an increasingly common market need and I am confident these customers will see throughput gains and payback faster than ever before.”

Companies interested in learning more about this partnership can experience it live at exhibit booth #501 at CSCMP EDGE 2019.

About 6 River Systems
6 River Systems was founded in Boston, Mass. in 2015 by Jerome Dubois, Rylan Hamilton, and Chris Cacioppo. Dubois and Hamilton were previously executives at Kiva Systems (now Amazon Robotics). 6 River Systems’ engineering team has decades of automation, software and operations experience and has designed, built, and deployed the world’s largest warehouse automation solutions. Leading 3PLs, retailers and manufacturers including Lockheed Martin, DHL, XPO Logistics, and Office Depot are using 6RS’ solutions to fulfill millions of units each week.

6 River Systems is supported by world-class venture capital firms and strategic investors, including Menlo Ventures, Norwest Venture Partners, Eclipse and iRobot.

About Soft Robotics
Soft Robotics is robotic automation for the factory of the future. Powered by advanced material science and AI, Soft Robotics’ gripping solutions adapt to today’s ever-changing manufacturing supply chain without the cost and complexity of traditional robotic systems. Since the company’s inception, its technology platform has experienced substantial customer validation and adoption, with production installations running 24/7 for global customers in Food & Beverage, Advanced Manufacturing and E-commerce.

Soft Robotics is backed by leading venture capital firms and strategic investors that include Calibrate Ventures, Hyperplane Venture Capital, Material Impact, Scale Venture Partners, ABB Technology Ventures, Honeywell Ventures, Tekfen Ventures and Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.