Electric Sheep Robotics, an autonomous lawn mowing provider, has announced the formal general availability of its Dexter robot. Dexter takes existing commercial lawn mowers, both gas, and electric, and turns them into autonomous vehicles. Dexter is designed to address critical labor shortages in the landscaping, facilities, and property management industries.
Nationally, a record 4.5 million U.S. workers quit their jobs in November. There are more job openings than there are workers. The labor market in landscaping is particularly dire. Tens of thousands of full-time positions are going unfilled, according to the National Association of Landscape Professionals.
The company also announced Series A financing in the amount of $21.5 million, led by Tiger Global. To date, the company has raised $25.7 million and is currently the best-capitalized autonomous mowing start-up with the largest number of commercial customer deployments.
“Automation of the $115 billion outdoor maintenance market is an enormous opportunity hiding in plain sight," said Griffin Schroeder, Partner, Tiger Global. "Electric Sheep is leading the way with fully autonomous solutions. We are excited to invest and help them grow their leadership position.”
Other investors include Foundation Capital, who led the $4 million Seed round, grep -vc, Signia Venture Partners, as well as individual pre-Seed investors Ariel Cohen (TripActions), Travis Deyle (Cobalt Robotics), Sahil Lavingia (Gumroad), and Reinforced Ventures.
“I don’t think people realize that lawns are America’s largest crop," said Naganand Murty, CEO of Electric Sheep. "More land and water are dedicated to lawns than to wheat and corn combined, and more than 40 million acres of land in the U.S. has some form of lawn. And $20 billion is allocated annually to lawn mowing alone. Solutions such as Electric Sheep’s Dexter robot are helping our customers meet demand and better allocate their already scarce labor pool.”
Electric Sheep will use the funds to fuel expansion across all departments in order to meet growing customer demand. The company currently has contracts with thirty customers across the U.S. and interest is high.