Amazon launches $1 billion fund to put money into warehouse applied sciences

Robots transport items to the workers within the warehouse of a logistics heart of the mail order firm Amazon.

Rolf Vennenbernd | dpa | Image Alliance | Getty Pictures

Amazon is launching a $1 billion fund that may again firms “of all levels” constructing provide chain, achievement and logistics applied sciences, the corporate introduced Thursday.

The Amazon Industrial Innovation Fund will give attention to new applied sciences that may “improve supply velocity and additional enhance the expertise” of warehouse and logistics staff, Alex Ceballos Encarnacion, Amazon’s vice chairman of worldwide company growth, wrote in a weblog publish.

The fund is one subset of Amazon’s rising funding exercise. The e-commerce large in 2020 launched a $2 billion fund to put money into local weather applied sciences, and it operates the Alexa Fund, which has made investments in speech-recognition expertise, amongst different areas.

Begin-ups backed by the brand new fund embrace Modjoul, an organization creating wearable security expertise that points alerts and suggestions geared toward lowering accidents, resembling musculoskeletal issues, or strains and sprains.

MSDs are a few of the firm’s commonest warehouse accidents, and founder Jeff Bezos has beforehand stated Amazon must develop options to cut back their prevalence amongst new staff. Amazon has pledged to turn out to be “Earth’s Most secure Place to Work,” following elevated stress from lawmakers, advocacy teams and its personal staff over the way it treats its warehouse staff.

Three different firms included within the first spherical of investments are creating robotics “designed to enrich and coexist with folks’s lives,” Amazon stated.

Ten years in the past, the corporate acquired Kiva Techniques, which created wheeled robots for warehouses. Since then, Amazon has launched numerous robotic achievement facilities with the goal of dashing up supply of merchandise to customers. Final 12 months, it shared particulars of 4 warehouse robots it is testing to cut back strenuous actions for staff.

WATCH: Amazon CEO Andy Jassy: Staff are higher off not becoming a member of a union

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