Japanese space robot startup GITAI selected for 1st Google Demo Day Asia

Image courtesy of GITAI.

GITAI, a Japan-based startup developing a humanoid robot for use in space, has been selected as one of the 10 finalists qualified to pitch at Google Demo Day Asia.

An initiative allowing startups to pitch to investors, the annual Google Demo Day will be held in Asia for the first time on 20 September, in Shanghai.

Of the 10 finalists, only one startup – GITAI – is working on directly on space technology, although two others are deal with related technologies. DycodeX from Indonesia is currently developing IoT technologies for livestock monitoring, while SkyMagic from Singapore produces drone swarming technology for live entertainment and traffic management systems.

During the event, GITAI will aim to raise funding for its Avatar robot, which will be stationed in space and remotely controlled with a Virtual Reality Head-Mounted Display (VR HMD), a motion capture suit and a haptic glove. The company believes by sending one Avatar to the International Space Station (ISS), scientists will be able to conduct experiments such as space manufacturing using 3D printers without transporting humans to the station.

So far, GITAI has raised US$1.38 million in funding, including US$1.25M in a seed round conducted in December 2017. Investors in the company include 500 Startups and Japanese early-stage VC Anri. The startup was established in 2016, and shortly after received funding from Japan-based VC Skylab Ventures.

In addition to being one of Google Demo Day’s 10 finalists, GITAI has also been chosen as one of the 24 finalists selected to present at the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Space Solutions Startup Zone, to be held during the International Astronautical Congress (IAC) at Bremen this October.

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