Robotics startup from leading incubator ready to conquer the USD 3 billion market

Purple Robotics
After nine months in Odense Robotics StartUp Hub, a leading European robotic incubator, Purple Robotics is ready to launch their innovation: a vacuum gripper that enables small and medium-sized businesses reduce production time by up to 50%.

A USD 3 billion market awaits. A distribution deal is sealed. And a sales executive in place. Purple Robotics, a team of former developers from Universal Robots, is ready to reveal their product – latest in a series of innovations to come out of Odense Robotics StartUp Hub, a leading European robotics incubator. And the growth potential for Purple Robotics is huge.

 “We are entering a highly attractive market with sky-high growth rates. Our launch is an important milestone in our development and we’re confident that we’ll reach our ambitious goals. There’s no doubt that our time in the Odense Robotics StartUp Hub has enabled us to develop quickly and speeded up our time-to-market,” says Lasse Kieffer, CEO and founder of Purple Robotics.

New grip tool launched

It will be a world’s first when Purple Robotics launches their new electrical vacuum gripper, PR10, an end-of-arm tool designed for collaborative applications. With an innovative double grip function, it can handle several items in a single operation, reducing production time by up to 50% as a result. In addition, the tool needs no external air supply and can be installed in less than 30 minutes, reducing changeover time between two production lines.

PR10 was developed, tested and patented in just nine months in Odense Robotics StartUp Hub, where the team also established their supply chain. Purple Robotics is ready to launch the product and will present it at Automatica Trade Fair in Munich in June. To drive the launch and build a strong distribution network, Purple Robotics has hired Kenneth B. Henriksen, an established name in the industry, as their new sales executive from 1 May.

“It’s great to see yet another startup from our robotics incubator accomplish so much in such a short time frame. It’s pivotal to the development of the robotics cluster around Odense that we can offer the very best conditions for the very best entrepreneurs. By helping innovative ideas become reality, we take a step further towards our ambition of making Odense Robotics the global centre for robotics development and application,” says Peter Rahbæk Juel, Mayor of Odense.

First distribution deal sealed

Purple Robotics has entered into a partnership agreement with their former employer, Universal Robots: to include PR10 in UR+, Universal Robot’s global online distribution channel for customised robotics accessories. In this partnership, Purple Robotics joins more than 77 third-party robotics developers who, after having been screened and accepted, share this important sales channel with Universal Robots.

“Purple Robotics is a perfect example of why it’s important to have effective accelerator programmes that nurture innovative spin-outs from robotics companies. Accelerator programmes ensure spinouts don’t disappear; instead spinouts gain support to boost development and enter the market quickly. With Purple Robotics’ innovative double-gripper, Universal Robots strengthens the range of ground-breaking accessories offered to customers and potential customers across the world – while increasing the market potential of our robot arms. It’s a win-win,” says Anders Bo Rasmussen, Senior Product Manager for UR+ at Universal Robots.

The global market for collaborative robots, or cobots, is estimated to reach USD 3.3 billion by 2020 with annual growth rates of more than 50%, according to Qyresearch Publishing. PR10 has the potential to be applied to the majority of cobots. The PR10 combined with a robot arm is especially attractive for small and medium-sized companies, whose competitiveness highly depends on their ability to change over and deliver quickly.

The Odense Robotics StartUp Hub currently has five slots available for robotics and drone entrepreneurs with high growth potential. Since 2015, 10 robotics startups have completed the Hub’s accelerator programme, creating 36 jobs and securing more than DKK 40 million of capital and investment.


Photo: The Danish Technological Institute.