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Delivery robot firm Starship raises $40 million

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Delivery robot firm Starship raises $40 million
FILE PHOTO: A Starship Technologies commercial delivery robot crosses a street during a live demonstration in front of the headquarters of Metro AG in Duesseldorf, Germany, June 7, 2016.REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay   -   Copyright  Wolfgang Rattay(Reuters)
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TALLINN (Reuters) – Starship Technologies, a company set up by two founders of video messaging business Skype, has raised another $40 million (£33 illion) to expand its delivery robot business, it said on Tuesday.

The company’s six-wheel robots, reminiscent of science fiction films, have already been used in more than 100 countries for last-mile delivery of food, groceries, and small packages.

The latest funding will be used to expand its service to more university campuses in the United States, it said in a statement.

Companies from Amazon and Nuro in the United States to Deutsche Post and TwinswHeel in Europe are investing in automated delivery to try to improve customer service and cut costs.

Starship’s latest investment round was led by Morpheus Ventures, with participation from previous investors including Shasta Ventures, Matrix Partners and MetaPlanet Holdings, as well as new investors including TDK Ventures and Qu Ventures.

Starship was set up by Skype co-founders Janus Friis and Ahti Heinla, and has raised a total of $85 million so far. Its main engineering office is in Estonia, while it is headquartered in the United States.

(Reporting by Tarmo Virki; Editing by Mark Potter)

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