October 11, 2019

RightHand Robotics opens office in Japan

Massachusetts startup will pursue "significant market opportunity" for automated piece-picking technology in Asia Pacific.

By DC Velocity Staff

Automated piece-picking startup RightHand Robotics Inc. has established a corporate entity in Japan in a move intended to serve fast-growing demand for robotic piece-picking in Japan and the rest of Asia Pacific.

Somerville, Massachusetts-based RightHand said the new unit, called RightHand Robotics GK, will help it address "a significant market opportunity for supply chain automation" in Japan, which is both the world's second-largest retail sector and the second-largest industrial robotics market.

RightHand began the new venture by unveiling a new deployment in the country with Paltac Corp., a wholesaler of cosmetics and general pharmaceutical products based in Osaka, Japan. 

Paltac introduced RightHand's piece-picking solution installed at a warehouse located in Sugito, Japan, that stocks over 20,000 SKUs every year. In order to reliably pick and place a wide range of items at a high rate, the company installed multiple units of RightHand's RightPick workcells.

The new division will be led by Kensaburo Tamura, who will serve as the company's regional head of Asia Pacific after working as the Country Manager at Cloudera, Inc., a provider of Big Data and AI/ML software platforms. "Expanding into the Japanese market with the establishment of RightHand Robotics GK is a major accomplishment for our team," Leif Jentoft, co-founder of RightHand Robotics, said in a release. "Japan is a huge and expanding market for robotic piece-picking and having a presence there, under Mr. Tamura's leadership, will increase our opportunities in Asia Pacific and play a pivotal role in our global growth."

The expansion comes after RightHand landed $23 million in venture funding in 2018, then established integrations between its picking platform and robotics platforms from Locus Robotics and from Vecna Robotics.

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