For Robin Autopilot, 2020 was a pivotal year. We saw tremendous growth and progress, despite the challenges caused by Covid-19 and ever-changing market conditions.
Perhaps most notably, our team successfully transitioned the business from a franchisor service platform to a software company focused on Robots as a Service (RaaS). This new business model will allow us to empower landscaping companies to offer the benefits of robotic mowing for a growing number of lawns throughout the country.
All of our teams – Operations & Finance; Sales, Marketing & Business Development; Training & Support; and Software & Hardware Engineering – had a phenomenal year. In addition to transitioning our business model, we continued to strengthen our position as a market leader by evolving our technology offerings and expanding our value proposition to landscapers as well as our manufacturing partners.
Here are some of our most important accomplishments for the year:
· As part of the business model transition, we launched the Powered by Robin™ platform during the first quarter, converting all franchises to subscribers, and enabling new landscapers to join the Robin platform through our subscription model.
· We entered into a national partnership with Weed Man, USA, one of the largest lawn and garden companies in the world, to roll out robotics through their TurfBot brand.
· We negotiated new supply agreements with all major manufacturers, allowing Robin to become a multi-manufacturer distributor for landscapers.
· Our sales team continued its focus on mid-market landscapers across the United States, adding more than 40 new subscribers in 2020, all in the landscaping sector. We also took our story throughout the country with our #robotroadshow, meeting with landscapers one-on-one.
· Our training and support team launched Robin University, a comprehensive set of in-person and virtual instruction programs for running a successful RaaS business. We also implemented a two-day orientation training program to help new subscribers integrate Powered by Robin™, and we launched Robin Library, a full-service resource center for all things robotic, including user manuals, marketing guides, and tips and tricks.
· Our hardware engineering team introduced our brand-new patented wire break finder, which allows landscapers and service providers to find breaks faster (including partial breaks) and improve accuracy.
· We revamped our patented robotic door to address hardware issues and to prepare the door for mass manufacturing in the United States and China. We also certified our robotic door and added accessories to allow the door to work with products from all major manufacturers.
· We launched a new e-commerce platform, which allows all subscribers to seamlessly purchase new equipment, parts, and accessories, and to finance their purchases at the click of a button. We also launched our first-of-its-kind agnostic fleet management system for managing all robots in one central system.
· We introduced a new financing system, automating the entire loan management and origination functions for all subscribers (including legacy financing).
· We developed a “white-labeled” website for new subscribers, allowing users to brand the site under their own guidelines and utilize our autonomous quoting functionality.
· Our Board of Directors added two new independent members – Joseph Paul, CFO of Davey Tree, and Jonathan Pototschnik, co-founder of Service Autopilot and CitiTurf.
All of these accomplishments have laid the foundation for strong growth in the future, and we are optimistic about 2021. Our goals for this year include:
· Delivering RaaS to a total of 150 mid-market landscapers on the Robin platform (with a heavy focus on the Dallas, Austin, San Antonio, Houston, and Atlanta areas).
· Distributing more than 1,000 robotic doors in the United States and securing a PO for the European market.
· Deploying (through our subscribers) 3,600 individual robotic units across the United States.
· Launching a full-service e-learning system and advanced in-classroom curriculum.
· Adding up to three new manufacturers to the Robin platform (with a focus on commercial-grade equipment).
· Launching our newly patented wire break finder.
· Releasing the new Powered by Robin™ software suite, to include Fleet Console for all manufacturers, Surveyor, Robin Forums, and full customer relationship management (CRM) integration.
Through these efforts, we are enabling landscapers and service providers alike to take advantage of RaaS to generate bottom-line impact, environmental change, and innovation across the green industry. As we continue to pursue this vision, we thank you and look forward to your ongoing support in 2021 and beyond.
CEO, Robin Autopilot, USA