Business ExpandingExotec, a French developer and manufacturer of robotic picking system for warehouses, establishes a Japanese subsidiary in Tokyo and sets up a warehouse in Kyoto Prefecture

Aug 30, 2021

ExotecExternal site: a new window will open. is a French robotic company that develops and manufactures flexible automation solutions for warehouses of retailers, e-commerce players, and manufacturers. Founded in 2015, it has a total of 300 employees in Europe, United States, and in Japan. Exotec is developing its business in nine countries around the world with revenues expected to exceed 100 million dollars in 2021. In September 2020, the company raised 90 million dollars in a Series C round of investment.


  • ICT
  • Machinery & Semiconductor
  • France

The company's automated picking robot system "Skypod" can move in three-dimensions up to a height of 12 meters at a speed of 4 meters/second with a loading capacity of 30kg. By effectively utilizing space to store inventory at a high density, the storage volume can be increased by five times compared to the conventional shelf-type picking. In addition, it is possible to introduce additional shelves and robots quickly and in stages according to inventory volume and business flow without interrupting operations, which is one of the features of the system that allows client companies to invest in warehouses at the pace of their business expansion. The warehouse control system “ASTAR” manages the work plan, and tracks and records the positions of cases and robots in the warehouse in real time.

Workers do not enter the area where the fleet of Skypod robots does automatic pick-up, and they can concentrate on packing the goods that Skypod has retrieved and brought to them. As a result, the system is improving productivity by up to fivefold compared to manual picking in a traditional work environment, eliminating repetitive, physically intense tasks of operators, such as walking 15km per day or relentlessly bending and lifting goods.

The Skypod robots are able to climb up to 12m-high to retrieve bins, densifying the storage by 5 times

The trajectories of the Skypod robots are defined by cutting-edge algorithms to achieve top market performance

In January 2020, the company established EXOTEC NIHON CO., LTD. in Tokyo with the aim of cultivating new customers and responding to existing customers. In Q1 2020, a warehouse was set up in Kyoto Prefecture and its full-scale activities in Japan are under way. In Q4 2021, its office will relocate to Minato Ward.

In November 2019, EXOTEC NIHON CO., LTD. and FAST RETAILING CO., LTD. announced the conclusion of a strategic global partnership to realize supply chain reforms. The deployment of close to 1,000 Skypod robots is on-going, and in Q3 2021, the company’s robots began operation for the first time in Japan, preparing orders for store replenishment at UNIQLO's Kobe warehouse

Upon establishing its Japanese base, JETRO's Invest Japan Business Support Center (IBSC) provided regulatory and institutional information, introduced service providers and arranged meetings with them, and provided subsidies and incentives information, real estate property information, and also provided consultation (registration, visa, tax, and labor).

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