Jibo, the social robot developer backed by Samsung, Acer, Ningbo GQY, Denstu, NetPosa, KDDI and LG Uplus, is seeking an acquisition deal.
Jibo, a US-based social robot maker backed by a host of corporates, has laid off almost all its employees and is seeking a sale, Axios has reported.
Founded in 2012, Jibo has created a social robot that can control a range of home systems and apps on command. The product is equipped with facial and voice recognition technology that allows it to recognize up to 16 different people and tailor its interactions accordingly.
The company has raised more than $65m in equity funding, from investors including consumer electronics makers Samsung and Acer, electronic display manufacturer Ningbo GQY, marketing firm Denstu, video surveillance system developer NetPosa and telecoms firms KDDI and LG Uplus.
However, despite that capital and $4m in crowdfunding, Jibo’s product was beset by long delays in shipping, leading it to offer refunds to some of its crowdfunding backers.
Jibo began shipping the robots in September 2017, only to find them unfavourably compared to other home control systems, such as Amazon’s Alexa. It has now has let go of all but five members of staff, and is looking to sell the company according to Axios.
CRV, Fairhaven Capital Partners and Osage Venture Partners supplied an undisclosed amount of seed capital for Jibo before joining Samsung unit Samsung Ventures, RRE Ventures, Flybridge Capital Partners, Two Sigma and Formation 8 for the $25.3m first tranche of its series A round in 2015.
I think LG should buy the company!