Dexai Robotics, an AI robotics company focused on commercial kitchen automation, raised $5.5 million in a Seed funding round, led by Hyperplane Venture Capital.
New investors Rho Capital, Harlem Capital, Contour Venture Partners, and NextView Ventures also participated in the funding round. As part of the funding, Vivjan Myrto, a Managing Partner at Hyperplane, joined Dexai’s board of directors.
The company plans to use the new funds to expand its engineering, sales, and product teams and fuel its growth in the foodservice space
Dexai currently offers Alfred, a collaborative robot arm that uses utensils to scoop and pick ingredients, exceeding human capabilities in speed and precision. Alfred robots work in existing kitchens and prepare meals from different cuisines faster, safer, and more affordably, according to the company. According to the USDA’s Economic Research Service, the US consumers’ demand for food prepared outside the home continues to surpass that for food at home, growing at double the rate in the last decade.
“Each restaurant operator I spoke with complained that their most difficult challenge is finding, training, and retaining staff,” said Anthony Tayoun, Dexai’s CFO and Co-Founder. “We founded Dexai to address the 150,000-person labor shortage in the restaurant industry so that restaurants can focus on hospitality and, by robots handling repetitive tasks, workforce satisfaction.”
“Alfred can be dropped into existing kitchens because its artificial intelligence software recognizes its surroundings and adapts to the task at hand,” said David MS Johnson, Dexai’s CEO and Co-Founder.
“Because Alfred uses standard utensils, it can make ice cream sundaes for one customer, quinoa bowls for another, and poke for a third. We’re teaching robots how to ‘see’ and identify different objects and foodstuff, and prepare the delicious recipes that people already know and enjoy.”
Image Credit: Dexai Robotics