In manufacturing — and especially in the space of contract manufacturing, where production lines are reconfigured to suit the product that’s being built — we’ve seen a prevailing trend from super-specific automation robots that are custom-built to do just one thing, toward more generalized, multi-purpose robots. Flexxbotics just closed a $2.9 million round to leap into the production line, to rock its body in time (okay, I believe you).
The Boston-based company is bringing work-cell manufacturing to the cloud, with a SaaS solution aiming to improve manufacturing and the management thereof. The platform connects enterprise business systems with the manufacturing floor for increased transparency. The tool itself is a no-code platform that focuses on process control, capturing operations data and assisting with the more automated setup of individual work cells.
The company was founded by a pair of Tylers in 2018 — Tyler Bouchard wearing the CEO hat, and and Tyler Modelski with the CTO hat, presumably a fashionable baseball cap with the Flexxbotics logo embroidered on it. Flexxbotics is a spin-out from Northeastern University by ways of its IDEA program. The company launched its first set of robotic productivity tools in 2020, and today, the company claims these are used in close to 100 companies world-wide.
“Flexxbotics is focused on the mission of helping discrete manufacturing companies complete the digital transformation. These companies have struggled with the challenge of connecting ERP, MES and other modern business systems with the legacy production equipment on the shop floor,” says Bouchard. “Our vision is to change that by providing a turnkey tool kit to seamlessly connect robots, CNC machines, PLCs and other manufacturing with each other through a shop floor communications mesh.”
The Series A financing round was led by eCoast Angels. The group focuses on early-stage companies developing advanced technology solutions. According to Peter Schroer, a member of eCoast Angels, “Flexxbotics was appealing to us as investors because they are taking a novel approach to connect information from business systems directly with the devices/machines in shop floor workcells. This has long been a critical gap for manufacturing companies and we expect rapid adoption of their product in the coming months as the company rolls out its new technology.”