Corvallis-based startup Agility Robotics has announced plans to open a large factory in Salem later this year. The facility will have the capacity to build over 10,000 robots annually and will employ both people and robots. The robot being produced at the factory, called Digit, is designed to work with bulky materials in warehouses.
The 70,000-square-foot factory will initially employ an undisclosed number of individuals but has the potential to provide jobs for up to 500 people in the future. The company utilized technology developed at Oregon State University to create Digit, which is capable of walking on two legs, climbing stairs, and carrying and stacking large objects.
Agility Robotics has raised more than $180 million in private funding since its establishment in 2015, including a significant investment from Amazon. The e-commerce giant has partnered with Agility Robotics in its search for technologies that can enhance its own operations.
The new factory in Salem is a positive development for Oregon’s manufacturing industry, which has experienced a decline in employment over the past year, resulting in the loss of approximately 4,100 jobs. However, the state’s unemployment rate remains low at 3.4%.
Agility Robotics plans to deliver its first batch of Digit robots to commercial customers next year and aims to begin selling them broadly in the same year. The company’s vision is to use robotics to address challenges in today’s workforce, such as injuries, burnout, high turnover, and labor gaps.
Agility Robotics – Corvallis startup Agility Robotics to open Salem factory
Oregonian – Agility Robotics plans factory in Salem, but offers few details