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Third Wave Automation Closes $40M Round

August 5, 2021

Third Wave Automation closed a Series B financing, a $40M round led by Norwest Venture Partners including participation from prior investors Innovation Endeavors and Eclipse, along with Toyota Ventures. The additional funds will accelerate growth and commercialization efforts. As a part of today's announcement, Matt Howard, General Partner at Norwest Venture Partners, will join Third Wave's board of directors.

"I've been tracking Arshan and the team at Third Wave for some time and have been consistently impressed," said Howard. "When I last visited the Third Wave facility and saw its forklifts easily completing picks and places my jaw dropped, and I knew Norwest needed to be a part of this journey. We are thrilled to support the Third Wave team as they fundamentally alter the warehouse and material handling industry."

"While we weren't actively raising, having the opportunity to bring Norwest and Matt's expertise into our orbit was too good to pass up," said Arshan Poursohi, CEO of Third Wave. "This extra capital will allow us to accelerate hiring and speed our path to the commercial market following our recent successful technical trials. We are now in active conversations with the top 20 3PL's and retailers in the industry. There is a real need for our technology and we are eager to meet that need."

Third Wave's unique approach to industrial automation was conceived with artificial intelligence and computer vision at its core. Following years of research and development, Third Wave recently signed a commercial agreement and strategic partnership with industrial powerhouse Toyota Industries Corporation, Inc. With this additional funding, Third Wave is set to define the industry's agenda for the next generation.

Industrial Solution for a Growing $100 Billion Market

Third Wave's first focus is on the forklift, the workhorse of the global supply chain. The industry is over $100 billion globally. A forecasted 9% CAGR from 2021 to 2027 will result in shipments of over 2 million units annually by 2027. Because of the complex and dynamic tasks required of forklifts, innovation in the category has lagged. But, this customer base is hungry for technology advancements that will improve safety and efficiency, yielding a tremendous opportunity for Third Wave.

Third Wave's solution is unique among its peers, leveraging a proprietary mix of adaptive automation, shared autonomy and continuous learning. The end result is a system that is highly flexible, quickly deployable, capable of constant improvement, and delivers a rapid return on customer investment. Third Wave's system renders improvements in safety, efficiency and throughput while delivering unparalleled functionality, such as high rack pick-and-place.

Investor Validation

"Third Wave's machine learning first approach to industrial automation has enabled them to develop a solution that has previously been unavailable to the global supply chain," said Seth Winterroth, who led Third Wave's seed funding for Eclipse. "Since our initial investment in 2018, the team has executed tirelessly to build a product that arms their customers with the operational efficiency and resiliency needed in today's heavily burdened supply chains. With this funding, Third Wave is poised to become the most significant industrial automation company of the modern era."

"Third Wave uses next-gen robotics to solve decades-old challenges with warehousing, which drives huge improvements to both worker safety and productivity," said Scott Brady, partner at Innovation Endeavors. "Solving these problems helps build resilience against issues that arise in logistics and across the supply chain. We congratulate the Third Wave team on their continued growth and are excited to support them as they roll out even more of these advanced robotics solutions."

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