Brisbane company LYRO Robotics has secured seed funding from a major Japanese company after TIQ brought the two together.

Japanese manufacturer Toyo Kanetsu will provide funding through its corporate venture capital fund Toyo Kanetsu Corporate Venture Fund II (TKCVII) for LYRO Robotics to commercialise their products.

The Brisbane-based start-up, which was only incorporated in August 2019, specialises in developing robotic picking and packing technology for warehouses, supply chains and logistics operations.

The funding is Toyo Kanetsu’s first investment in Australia.

TIQ CEO Paul Martyn congratulated the company on its success.

‘It’s fantastic to see a young Queensland business securing investment from a major international company,’ Mr Martyn said.

‘High-tech industries like robotics are a major focus of our trade and foreign direct investment strategy in Queensland, and it’s incredibly rewarding for TIQ to facilitate initiatives like this that help diversify and advance Queensland’s trade and investment profile.’

LYRO Robotics will use the seed funding to expand its team and deploy robots with early adopters while further developing globally competitive picking and packing solutions.

LYRO Robotics Managing Director and co-founder Dr Jürgen ‘Juxi’ Leitner said the funding was ‘the first big step’ towards creating ‘the brains, eyes and hands’ for the next generation of truly useful robots.

‘We are designing our robots to seamlessly fit into existing factory operations, reducing the need for costly changes of existing workflows,’ Dr Leitner said.

‘They aim to ensure smooth workflow, in particular helping businesses that struggle with labour shortages, especially around seasonal variance.

‘Our robots are specifically designed to adapt and learn when working in new conditions and interacting with new items.’

Mr Leitner said while it was still early days for the robotics industry, the company had big plans.

‘LYRO has a long-term vision with a pipeline of projects ranging from close to home all the way to out-of-this world applications – think outer space!’

TIQ introduced members of the LYRO team to Toyo Kanetsu representatives during a special meeting in June 2019 at TIQ’s Brisbane office.

Attracting foreign direct investment to Queensland and supporting Queensland start-ups are key actions identified in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.