British online supermarket and technology group Ocado has agreed to buy materials handling robotics startup Myrmex Inc for $10.2 million, it said on Monday.
Ocado acquired a minority stake in Athens-based Myrmex in 2020 and tasked it with developing a system that automates the loading of containers with customer orders onto frames ready for dispatch from Ocado’s warehouses.
The “Automated Frameload” solution it developed is set to go live in Ocado’s warehouses later this year.
It is part of a suite of innovations, also including lightweight robots and hi-tech van routing systems, that Ocado unveiled in January.
Ocado said Myrmex’s technology also has potential applications for store locations, specifically for automating the grocery order pickup process. [Reuters]