A start-up that produces commercial robotic lawnmowers has secured £2m of funding from Scottish Enterprise and a range of UK and European investors.
Glasgow-based Kingdom Technologies, established in 2018 by University of Glasgow graduate Joan Kangro, develops autonomous robotic lawnmowers for commercial customers requiring large areas of grass to be mown. The company already lists golf courses and local authorities among its clients.
The company’s robots can cover areas ten times greater than traditional robot mowers due to smart navigation technologies. With its electric battery, it also produces less air pollution than conventional solutions.
The £2m funding will be used to support the growing demand for its services and to expand internationally. The business has nearly 400 pre-orders from customers across the UK, Europe and US. Expansion in the US is a particular focus for Kangro.
Investment – alongside Scottish Enterprise – is from Metaplanet, Ironwolf, Superangel and Specialist VC.
With support from the European Regional Development Fund through Glasgow City Council’s business advisory scheme and the University of Glasgow, Kangro has also won the Scottish Edge Wild Card competition and RSE Unlocking Ambition Enterprise Fellowship.
Kangro said: “The investment comes at the right time for Kingdom. Having conducted a lengthy period of development, we are now ready to expand our service across the UK, Europe and the US.
“We know from these extensive pilots that we have a reliable and robust product capable of operating in complicated environments. The next phase of our business is to manufacture more products and expand our offering to the US market.”
However, they noted that a particular challenge in the company’s growth plan is the availability of skilled robotics engineers.
“Scotland is good at developing robotics engineers and developers. However, the attraction to then move abroad is very strong. Companies such as Kingdom provide opportunities to put the education into practice, and at the same time contribute to the growing robotics industry in Scotland.”
Kerry Sharp, Director of Entrepreneurship & Investment at Scottish Enterprise, added: “We’ve supported Kingdom Technologies for some time so it’s great to see the company’s continued growth and expansion, including plans to create more Scottish jobs and to target the lucrative US market.
“The company has cornered a gap in the lawn care market and is making the most of this opportunity. We look forward to seeing what they do and where they go next.”