Robot pizza maker raises $375 mn from SoftBank


Zume Pizza, a start-up that uses robots to make pizza, has reportedly received $375 million of backing from the tech investment firm SoftBank.


The company announced the cash injection in a securities filing. The investor identity was not revealed in the filing, but the Wall Street Journal has been the first to report that the cash has come out of SoftBank’s Vision Fund.


The Japanese bank’s Vision Fund is worth $100 billion. It is most heavily backed by a $45 billion payment raised from Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund.


The WSJ report added that the SoftBank is expected to invest a further $375 million in the company, valuing the pizza delivery company at roughly $2.25 billion.


Zume Pizza employs a mix of robots and humans to create and deliver food. Robots squirt and spread the tomato sauce onto the uncooked pies and then transfer them into 800-degree ovens


The robots cost between $25,000 and $35,000 each and are made by ABB, a global manufacturer that typically deals with robots for large manufacturing facilities.


The company also plans to run trucks that use remote-controlled ovens to fire up the pizzas enroute. Switching the ovens on from the cloud allows the company to bypass rules preventing food preparation in moving vehicles.


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