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Agility Robotics declares govt strikes to strengthen Digit commercialization


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Digit at the 2024 Robotics Summit & Expo.

Digit on the 2024 Robotics Summit & Expo. Credit score: Eugene Demaitre

Agility Robotics at present introduced modifications to its govt staff because it productizes and commercializes its Digit humanoid robotic. The corporate added skilled expertise chief Daniel Diez as chief technique officer.

Agility Robotics additionally mentioned that Melonee Clever is transferring from chief expertise officer to the function of chief product officer (CPO). As well as, Pras Velagapudi is getting into the function of CTO, efficient instantly. 

“As the one firm with a humanoid robotic already delivering helpful work to clients, Agility is shaping the way forward for labor,” acknowledged Peggy Johnson, CEO of Agility Robotics. “At the moment, we’re strengthening our distinctive management staff to leap on this huge market alternative.”

“Daniel brings an excellent observe report of main enterprise transformation and company technique, and in relation to deploying fleet-level robotics options in logistics and manufacturing operations, Melonee’s and Pras’s technical, product, and business expertise are unbeatable,” she added. “I’m thrilled to have their skilled management in these new and expanded roles as we put together for business scale.”

Corvallis, Ore.-based Agility Robotics mentioned its mission is “to construct robotic companions that increase the human workforce, finally enabling people to be extra human.” The firm described Digit as a “bipedal cellular manipulation robotic” (MMR) and as “the primary multi-purpose, human-centric robotic that’s made for work.” The system has been in trials for logistics duties at Amazon and GXO Logistics.

Jonathan Hurst, co-founder and chief robotic officer of Agility Robotics, delivered a keynote deal with in regards to the technical challenges of constructing humanoids on the Robotics Summit & Expo earlier this month. Digit gained the inaugural RBR50 Robotic of the Yr Award.


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Clever strikes from CTO to chief product officer

Agility Robotics mentioned that, since becoming a member of it as CTO in Could 2023, Clever has reworked how the corporate approaches product improvement because it prepares to deliver its merchandise to market at scale. Along with main Agility’s engineering and expertise efforts, Clever created and led the staff that conceived, constructed, and launched Agility Arc, a cloud platform for deploying and managing fleets of Digits with different automation.

Melonee Wise, chief product officer, Agility Robotics

Melonee Clever, chief product officer, Agility Robotics

Within the expanded function of CPO, Clever will proceed to steer Agility’s engineering staff along with the newly shaped product group. 

Clever has years of expertise within the robotics trade. Previous to becoming a member of Agility in 2023, she was the vp of robotics automation at Zebra Applied sciences. Earlier than that, Clever was CEO of Fetch Robotics till its acquisition by Zebra in 2021.

Beforehand, Clever was the second worker at Willow Storage, the place she led a staff of engineers creating next-generation robotic {hardware} and software program, together with the Robotic Working System (ROS), the PR2, and TurtleBot. Clever serves as a robotics board member for the Affiliation for Advancing Automation (A3).

All through her profession, Clever has acquired many accolades and awards together with the MIT Expertise Overview TR35, Provide & Demand Chain Govt’s 2021 Provide Chain Lady of the Yr, the 2022 Engelberger Award, and as one in every of “eight CEOs altering the way in which we work” by Enterprise Insider.

Clever acquired a B.S. in mechanical engineering and physics engineering and an M.S. in mechanical engineering from the College of Illinois.

Velagapudi turns into Agility CTO

“Within the yr since he joined Agility, Velagapudi has galvanized the corporate’s AI technique and proven repeated breakthroughs in utilizing AI to speed up Digit’s business capabilities,” mentioned the corporate. “As CTO, he’ll proceed to deal with pragmatic product-relevant improvements, operationalizing the corporate’s analysis and improvement efforts, and exploring new applied sciences, with an emphasis on making use of fashionable and rising AI to allow business scale.”

Pras Velagapudi, CTO, Agility Robotics

Pras Velagapudi, CTO, Agility Robotics

Velagapudi has many years of expertise in robotics planning and management, in addition to in creating and deploying robots into house, industrial, and outside environments. Earlier than becoming a member of Agility as vp of innovation and chief architect in 2023, he was a vp of engineering and chief architect of cellular robotics at Berkshire Gray, deploying fleets of a whole lot of robots to logistics functions.

As well as, Velagapudi is co-founder of Platypus, a low-cost Android-based fleet infrastructure for small autonomous robotic boats to gather environmental information on our bodies of water. Previous to that, he led electrical programs design and engineering at RedZone Robotics, a subterranean pipe-inspection robotic supplier.

Velagapudi acquired his B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. from Carnegie Mellon College, the place he additionally served as adjunct college and challenge scientist for a few years. 

Daniel Diez to set go-to-market technique

As chief technique officer, Diez is accountable for setting Agility’s general enterprise and go-to-market technique, working carefully with Johnson, mentioned the corporate. On this function, he may also lead all advertising and communications efforts to construct the corporate’s status and develop consciousness and demand for Digit as the corporate enters its subsequent part of economic progress. 

Daniel Diez, chief strategy officer, Agility Robotics

Daniel Diez, chief technique officer, Agility Robotics

Diez joins Agility from Magic Leap, the place he led its transformation from a client expertise startup to an enterprise expertise firm. He was accountable for the business launch of Magic Leap 2.

Most just lately, Diez served as chief business officer at Magic Leap, overseeing enterprise improvement, gross sales, buyer expertise, ecosystem options, developer relations, advertising, model, communications, public affairs, and authorities relations. He beforehand held the roles of chief transformation officer and chief advertising officer at Magic Leap. 

Previous to becoming a member of Magic Leap, Diez served as chief advertising officer and head of product at Remodel Manufacturers, the proprietor of the Kenmore equipment model. Earlier than that, he was the worldwide chief advertising officer for R/GA, a world advertising and innovation company, and he helped lead the corporate’s transformation from a digital advertising company to a world promoting and model transformation powerhouse. 

All through his profession, Diez has been an advocate for company citizenship and his ardour for creating constructive change extends past the world of enterprise. He serves on the board of the LGBT Neighborhood Heart in New York and has beforehand served as a professional bono advertising and communications guide for non-profit organizations together with the Advert Council and the Human Rights Marketing campaign.

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