Kiwi company Invert Robotics, which uses robotics to revolutionise the way industrial tanks are inspected, is raising capital to expand into the European dairy market, and is in partnership discussions with a multi-billion euro turnover company over the use of its technology.
Invert Robotics invented a climbing robot using a world-first patented attachment technology. It enables faults in industrial tanks to be found remotely, increasing inspection accuracy and significantly reducing the risk of workplace accident. The robot uses advanced sensors to monitor itscondition and high definition cameras to feed detailed inspection data instantly to an operator, who controls the robot standing safely outside the tank.
Currently the robots are used in the New Zealand dairy industry to inspect the interior of stainless steel tanks and dryers, some up to six storeys high. The robots attach and drive up the inside walls of the tanks. The traditional method for carrying out these inspections has been to have people abseil from ropes inside the tanks, looking for cracks with torches.
James Robertson, Invert Robotics CEO says that it is a very exciting time for the company.
“To be sought out by this European company, who could find no equivalent technology anywhere else in the world, is a massive vote of confidence for Invert Robotics and the team that has supported and guided us.
“We have been perfecting our inspection robots, working with trans-Tasman dairy companies, and over the past four years have carried out more than 250 inspections. We know we have a product that is truly market changing.
“The next step is to expand offshore, serving the sectors we know well before we get into other industries.
“We’re focusing on the European dairy market, because of its potential. Its size – at eight times New Zealand – and the high level of attention paid to health and safety, combine into a huge opportunity, making our robots an attractive and low risk option for tank inspection in that market.
“But we need money to make our plans and the potential of our business a reality, which is why we’re raising capital,” says Robertson.
The company was founded by Robertson in 2010 in partnership with Powerhouse Ventures, a technology investment, business incubation and IP commercialisation specialist.
With support and guidance from Powerhouse, the team Robertson has created has a strong skill base, enabling them to cover the diverse tasks necessary to both create the robots and develop the business. The team has a combination of strong engineering and management backgrounds, with support from a board with deep managerial and governance skills, including former Tait CFO David Wade.
Invert Robotics is partway through a capital raising, via trans-Tasman equity crowd funding platform Equitise.