1. News
May 17, 2022

Starship Technologies and Co-op trial robot grocery delivery

The trial is part of Cambridgeshire County Council's 'wide-ranging' environmental agenda.

Estonian autonomous delivery company Starship Technologies has partnered with Cambridgeshire County Council and Co-op to trial food delivery robots in Cambourne, UK.

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As part of the trial, Starship’s autonomous robots will deliver grocery items from local Co-op stores to 12,000 residents in 5,000 homes from 17 May.

Eligible residents living in Lower and Upper Cambourne will be able to order from the Co-op store on Mosquito Road in Upper Cambourne.

Customers can schedule their delivery, enter a pin of their address and trace the package in real-time through an interactive map.

Starship plans to expand the service across the county subject to the performance of the trial.

Cambridgeshire County Council Highways and Transport Committee chair Cllr Alex Beckett said: “The partnership between the council and Starship is tremendously exciting and has the potential to make life easier for thousands of residents while also reducing congestion.

“Hopefully, the trial will be a success, which would allow us to extend the benefits of quick and easy deliveries to more people across the county.”

Starship’s robots are powered by zero-carbon electricity and are claimed to consume as little energy as is needed to boil a cup of tea.

The lightweight robots use sensors, artificial intelligence and machine learning to navigate around any obstacles. They have a maximum speed of 4mph, which is roughly the same as the average pedestrian.

Starship Technologies UK operation manager Andrew Curtis said: “In the last few years, we have had extremely positive feedback from people using our service regularly in Milton Keynes and Northampton who have embraced the robots as part of their local communities.

“We’re looking forward to working closely with the council in Cambridgeshire and hopefully expanding the scope of this initial project.”

In September last year, Co-op extended its partnership with Starship Technologies by adding more than 300 autonomous vehicles to its robot fleet.

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Disruptive start-ups to watch out for

2021 was a record-breaking year, with more businesses breaking into the billion-dollar club. Many start-ups have achieved or retained the unicorn status by the end of the year to reflect nearly a fivefold growth from that in 2020. This boom can be linked to a financing frenzy spurred by the quick adoption of technology and innovative solutions by start-ups gaining traction in response to the pandemic. However, the start-up ecosystem is now facing turbulent times for fundraising as investors seek long-term business strategies, valuations, and a route to profitability amid uncertain market circumstances. Nevertheless, 2022 has the potential to carry forward the momentum with multiple entities having a fair chance of being in the right place when aided by the right technologies. GlobalData leverages the power of alternative data to examine the health of start-ups across multiple dimensions including the quality of their innovations, market presence, and the funding they can attract. This helps our clients to analyze the disruptive potential of start-ups for early alliances, investments, and acquisition prospects to develop future-proof strategic roadmaps for a competitive advantage. Read our report and gather insights on the following topics:
  • Recent Unicorn trends
  • Unicorns in 2022
  • Future Unicorns
  • Start-ups to watch out for
Start-up ecosystem outlook by top geographies
by GlobalData
Enter your details here to receive your free Whitepaper.