Why Acquisitions in the Robotics Industry Are Prevalent
Wed, April 14, 2021

Why Acquisitions in the Robotics Industry Are Prevalent

Giant tech companies are acquiring startups and other companies for further development in automation / Credits: PopTika via Shutterstock


Giant tech companies are heavily investing in robots and automation as industries demand more technologies in their production. As part of their efforts to develop and produce more innovations, they put interest in startups or other companies that can potentially provide them with the devices and machines they need. Over the past few months, Amazon acquired Canvas Technology, Shopify acquired 6 River Systems, and Teradyne acquired AutoGuide.

Electronics company IDTechEx recently released a report titled “Mobile Robots, Autonomous Vehicles, and Drones in Logistics, Warehousing, and Delivery 2020-2040” which discussed the different stages of market growth and outline the key assumptions/conditions. One of its findings showed that Amazon's acquisition of Canvas is for further development in automation. This move is not new to Amazon as the company had famously acquired Kiva Systems back in 2012 for $775 million. 

According to Robotics and Automation News, an online site that covers the robotics and automation industries around the world, the acquisition has allowed Amazon to boost the productivity of the latest generation of its fulfillment centers. Canvas has the technology that the company needs, including advanced navigation technology, enabling its mobile platforms to achieve intelligent autonomous mobility.

Shopify acquired 6 River Systems because of the latter because it has an interesting technology. It was reported that 70% of its 150-person team was focused on the software aspects. They are focused on autonomy algorithms and the larger sub-team on cloud-based fleet and task management software. 

However, Shopify clarified that the 6 River Systems has not been taken off the market. “We will continue to operate, build and sell 6 River Systems solution, in addition to making it available to our warehouse partners. As a result of extending this innovative technology beyond Shopify’s current market, not only are we helping to change the broader fulfillment industry, we’re also expanding our total available market,” Tobi Lütke, CEO of Shopify, said.