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Robotics industry received VC investment of $2.7 billion

The robotics industry has received VC investment of $2.7 billion in 2017, ABI Research said in a report.
US retained over half the number of individual investments. China is the next destination for VC investments for robotics industry.

When cumulative investment was considered, the United States lost significant market share, accounting for 49.4 percent of funding at $1.4 billion as opposed to 63 percent in the previous year. Despite accounting for 11 percent of the individual investments, Chinese robotics firms took 37 percent of total funding.

VC funds have invested over $500 million into commercial and consumer health robotics, the report said.

They invested close to $500 million for autonomous mobile robots specifically designed to function outdoors, a major expansion on the increasing popularity of Automated Mobile Robots (AMRs) in indoor locations like warehouses.

Robotics for segments such as construction, agriculture and last-mile delivery are also receiving investment.

Consumer robotics received VC investment of over $800 million. 75 percent of these were directed to toy robots and personal smart robots. This was impacted heavily by a choice number of significant investments into Chinese consumer robotics companies such as UB Tech.

Robotics investment has accelerated since 2015, and 2017 will not be the end of this trend, with current evidence already suggesting 2018 will represent another year of success for robotics companies seeking VC funding.

“While the growth in investment from 2016 to 2017, at 23.2 percent, slowed from growth between 2015 and 2016, this was affected by applying a narrower understanding of robotics, leaving out categories like autonomous cars,” said Rian Whitton, research analyst at ABI Research.

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