August 26, 2021

ElectricSheep400x275Electric Sheep Robotics has emerged from stealth to announce its official launch and showcase its Dexter robot, clamp-on hardware and software that turns commercial lawn mowers into self-driving systems. With landscaping a $105 billion industry, the company said it has been largely ignored by technology companies and lacked innovative solutions.

Founded in late 2019, the company employs a robots-as-a-service model (no upfront costs) for landscaping companies that are struggling to find labor. The Dexter robot can attach to new or existing gas or electric lawn mowers to make them autonomous. The system uses lidar, cameras, GPS and ultrasonic sensors for maneuvering across diverse terrain. All robots are monitored while in use, and incorporate a safety system capable of detecting perimeter breaches in even the most adverse conditions, the company said. The robots are built to the R15.08 standard for self-driving robots, Electric Sheep said.

The company said more than 50% of landscape maintenance involves mowing, a tedious and repetitive process made physically grueling by exposure to harsh weather. “My company and industry welcome self-driving mowers,” said Zech Strauser, owner of Strauser Nature’s Helpers in eastern Pennsylvania. “We have an already tight labor market, so I would love the opportunity to refocus my staff on the jobs robots can’t do. We are thrilled to be autonomy partners with Electric Sheep.”

In addition to lawn mowing, the company said it plans to apply the technology to other turf applications, including snow removal, sweeping, sidewalk repairs, and pest control. The company has raised approximately $4 million in funding, led by Foundation Capital, with participation from Grep VC, Signia Ventures, and angel investors that include Ariel Cohen (TripActions), Travis Deyle (Cobalt Robotics), and Sahil Lavingia (GumRoad).

With hundreds of thousands of commercial mowers being used today, the company said it is able to deploy on an existing and well-established platform. “The acuity of the need is so deep and the willingness to try autonomy so intense, that we have been overwhelmed by the response,” said Nag Murty, CEO and co-founder of Electric Sheep. “If we were to stop acquiring new customers today and just expand among the ones who are signed on with us, we would already have hundreds of millions in annual revenue in a few years.”

“Electric Sheep has an impressive team and the founders have complementary skills across product, technology and landscaping operations,” said Appoorva Pandhi of Foundation Capital. “With an elegant and simple retrofit approach that doesn’t require any change to an existing gas or electric mower, Electric Sheep automates the existing fleet and unleashes productivity, thus unlocking enormous revenue potential.”

For more details on the company, visit the Electric Sheep Robotics website.

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