Kitchener-Waterloo

Kitchener's Clearpath Robotics will use $30M US investment to build self-driving vehicles

Clearpath Robotics in Kitchener will use a new $30 million US investment to expand their development of self-driving vehicles used inside warehouses.

Clearpath's self-driving vehicles already on the market, CEO says

CEO of Clearpath Robotics Matt Rendall at the Clearpath Robotics warehouse in Kitchener. Clearpath Robotics is a startup company created by four University of Waterloo mechatronics engineering graduates. (Canadian Press)

Kitchener's Clearpath Robotics has secured nearly $40 million ($30 million US) in funding from investors to expand its OTTO Motors division, which focuses on self-driving vehicles used inside manufacturing and warehouse operations.

"Unlike city streets, a factory floor is a controlled environment, which makes it an ideal place to introduce self-driving vehicles at scale. Companies like Google, Tesla and Uber are still testing, whereas our self-driving vehicles are commercially available today," Clearpath co-founder and CEO Matt Rendall said in a release.

The company made the announcement Wednesday morning. The funding comes from iNovia Capital with participation from Caterpillar Ventures, GE Ventures, Eclipse Ventures, RRE Ventures and Silicon Valley Bank.

Self-driving materials handling vehicles

Rendall said the market for self-driving passenger vehicles is anticipated to be more than $80 billion US by 2030.

"We believe the market for self-driving materials handling vehicles will be equally significant," he said. "Clearpath has a big head start, and this new funding will allow us to further accelerate the development of the best self-driving software in the industry – and bring more OTTOs into the world faster."

Michael Young, a director at Caterpillar Ventures, said his company looks forward to collaborating with Clearpath Robotics "to drive efficiency gains in Caterpillar facilities."

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