Money Moves: Gather AI, RoadRunner Recycling and Innovation Works just received growth boosts

Money Moves: Gather AI, RoadRunner Recycling and Innovation Works just received growth boosts

From government grants to fundraising, it’s been an active week for Pittsburgh tech. But fear not – if you haven’t entered all the titles, Technically is here to help.

Following the announcement of a $5 million increase in ERIN Technologies and Duolingo’s acquisition of the Detroit-based animation studio Gunnerthese other local tech and venture capital organizations have their own news:

Gather AI raised $10 million Series A

Supply chain robotics company Gather AI raised $10 million in Series A. The funding round was led by Tribeca Venture Partners with the participation of Xplorer Capital, Dundee Venture Capital, Expert, bling capital, XRC Laboratories and 99 tartans — all previous investors.

Amid the pandemic’s negative impact on the supply chain, the Squirrel Hill-based startup has designed a platform that sends autonomous drones to track products in warehouses. The funding will go towards the company’s marketing strategy and the continued development of its platform.

Gather was founded in 2019 by Carnegie Mellon University robotics institute graduate students Sankalp Arora, Daniel Maturana and Geetesh Dubey.

“The reality is that the majority of warehouses have access to technology that predates the e-commerce boom, which has exacerbated the struggle to keep up with changing industry demands and customer habits,” said Arora said in a statement. “Gather AI enables warehouse operators to automate without the need [capital expenditures] to help solve age-old problems. Since our first warehouse rollout in 2020, we’ve seen incredible demand. This round of funding will help us respond to the overwhelming interest.

RoadRunner Recycling makes an acquisition

Graham Rihn. (Courtesy picture)

Downtown Pittsburgh RoadRunner Recycling acquired Compology, a San Francisco-based smart metering technology company. It comes after the sustainable waste management company started 2022 by catching the attention of the tech community with a $70 million Series D – still one of the biggest local funding rounds of the year.

With the acquisition, the Pittsburgh-based company will be able to use Compology’s computer vision technology to deliver a “technologically advanced” waste management solution to businesses and governments, according to a press release. Financial details were not disclosed.

“The future of sustainable waste management and recycling requires smart technology and intelligence,” said Graham Rihn, founder and CEO of RoadRunner Recycling, in a statement. “We are thrilled to partner with Compology, a team that brings cutting-edge technology and a shared passion for using data to help businesses increase recycling and operate more sustainably, while spending less. for better service. »

The RoadRunner founded in 2014 now has nearly 600 employees after having counted 400 in January.

Innovation Works wins Build to Scale funding

Last but not least, a start-up venture capital firm innovation works was one of 51 recipients of the last Build to scale grants from the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration (EDA).

The Build to Scale program sets aside $47 million to support technology entrepreneurs and encourage innovation. By strengthening tech ecosystems, the administration hopes the economy as a whole will be strengthened, according to a government statement.

Innovation Works and partner Carnegie Mellon University secured $2 million from Build to Scale 2022 Business Challenge for their project entitled “Scaling Networks in Southwestern Pennsylvania”. The funding and the project will allow them to “expand entrepreneurship support services to benefit all populations, especially women, people of color and people living in rural communities.” The funding is coupled with a local counterpart of $2 million.

“EDA is proud to partner with this year’s Build to Scale grantees as they invest in entrepreneurs and create equitable access to capital in their communities,” said the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for economic development. Alejandra Y. Castillo said in a statement. “These projects will give the next generation of industry-leading companies a critical boost that will result in job creation and private investment – ​​potentially transforming a regional economy and creating economic opportunities beyond what we can predict.”

This week, Innovation Works also named its former chief investment officer, Fri Rajuas the new President and CEO.

Atiya Irvin-Mitchell is a 2022-2023 corps member of Report for America, an initiative of The Groundtruth Project that pairs young journalists with local newsrooms. This position is supported by Heinz endowments. -30-

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