Restaurant industry startup Miso Robotics gets $10 million in financing

Screen Shot 2018-02-21 at 2.56.17 PM

Miso Robotics’ hamburger-flipping robot, “Flippy.”

Miso Robotics, a robotics and artificial intelligence company for restaurants and food providers, has secured $10 million in series B financing and will soon debut its hamburger-flipping robot, “Flippy,” at CaliBurger’s Pasadena, California, location.

The funding round was led by Acacia Research Corp. (Nasdaq: ACTG). Participating strategic investors included sports and entertainment hospitality company Levy RestaurantsOpenTable Chief Technology Officer Joseph Essasand founding investor Cali Group; and six members of Cali Group’s management team and its subsidiary, CaliBurger.

Pasadena-based Miso Robotics said it will use the new capital to expand its suite of collaborative, adaptable, robotic kitchen assistants and to broaden applications for Miso AI, the company’s machine-learning cloud platform.

The company is planning to launch “Flippy” at CaliBurger’s Pasadena store and aims to roll out the technology to more than 50 CaliBurger restaurants worldwide by the end of 2019.

Screen Shot 2018-02-21 at 2.38.55 PMRobotics plans to roll out “Flippy” to more than 50 CaliBurger restaurants worldwide by the end of 2019.

Miso Robotics also named three new members to its advisory board: Essas, who will serve as a key restaurant technology adviser; Charless C. Fowlkes, associate professor at the University of California at Irvine, department of computer science; and Aaron Ames, a roboticist and California Institute of TechnologyBren Professor of mechanical and civil engineering. Both Fowlkes and Ames will both serve machine learning and artificial intelligence advisers.

“We are thrilled by the growing confidence in Miso Robotics and remain committed to fulfilling our goal of modernizing the $3 trillion global prepared foods industry,” said Miso Robotics co-founder and CEO David Zito in a statement. “Acacia’s patent expertise and our strategic investors will be invaluable as we continue to commercialize our cutting edge technology.”

Miso Robotics said its robotic kitchen assistants and Miso AI platform are designed to boost productivity and improve food quality. They also allow restaurants and food providers to meet customer expectations for fresher ingredients prepared quickly and consistently while keeping the cost of food down.

“The company’s unique position as a pioneer in autonomous solutions for the commercial kitchen will not only transform the modern restaurant but also will change the way we think about how food is produced and served,” said Rob Stewart, president of Acacia Research.

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