Citing difficulties by many breakthrough technologies to secure sufficient, early-stage funding to get them from laboratory to commercialization and beyond, Chrysalix Venture Capital (Vancouver, Canada) and accelerator RoboValley (TU Delft, Netherlands) are partnering to pick and fund the best of global candidates.
“Global technology in robotics is advancing very quickly yet today there is no international pure-play venture capital fund focused on robotics and so closely aligned with a robotics ecosystem,” said Mike Sherman, a Chrysalix managing partner who is now also managing partner of the new RoboValley Fund.
Chrysalix, a Vancouver clean-tech venture capital firm, will build the fund while the RoboValley Innovation Hub and Technical University (TU) Delft’s Robotics Institute will scout and select technologies for funding. The RoboValley Fund has a Dutch connection with Chrysalix, who’s founder, Dutch-born Wal van Lierop, worked for almost a decade as an Associate Professor at the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam.
“Our goal is to have this fund raised by the end of this year,” Sherman added. Most likely kickstarting between 15 to 20 startups from universities and national labs that are developing novel approaches in robotics that are good candidates for commercialization.
“RoboValley and Delft University of Technology have an outstanding reputation for being on the cutting edge of modern robotics research and development,” said Sherman, “with exclusive access to emerging technologies as well as leading professors and industry experts world-wide, and we are pleased to be partnered with them on this new fund.”
In the past, Chrysalix has raised more than $300 million by leveraging investment from global blue-chip companies, which it then uses to it invest in potentially disruptive technology companies, e.g. Burnaby’s General Fusion and New Jersey’s Liquid Light, the latter using waste CO2 as a feedstock for making a variety of chemicals.
Investment capital for the RoboValley Fund will be raised from large industrial corporations and financial institutions over the coming months, explained Sherman.
RoboValley is new center for robotics in the Netherlands. To strengthen the innovation, a large team of researchers, companies and startups are closely collaborating; this Triple Helix Collaboration provides a solid base for innovation and improvement in the field of robotics, and thereby in creating The Next Generation Robotics, reports RoboValley.