From Copiers to Robots – Konica Minolta Launches Robot Pilot Program for Hotels

Savione+guest+deliveryThe next time you’re in a hotel and order extra towels or soap, it just may be a robot delivering them to you, thanks to the Konica Minolta Business Innovation Center’s launch of a new robotics partnership pilot program with Savioke, a provider of autonomous service robots to the hospitality industry.

As part of the services partnership pilot with Savioke, Konica Minolta will provide on-site installation, maintenance, and break/fix services for Savioke’s Relay robots, related software, and network suites. Savioke will continue to design, manufacture, and supply the robots.

Relay works with hotel staff to deliver items from one person to another. Savioke is in the process of deploying the robots in hotels throughout the country.  A video of Relay in action is available at Youtube here.

The pilot program is a result of the efforts of Konica Minolta’s Business Innovation Center, which has been  exploring and investing in new technology initiatives in Silicon Valley (and around that world at other Business Innovation Center sites) in order to bring emerging solutions into Konica Minolta’s portfolio. Defining the disruptive opportunities in the robotics industry is a strategic focus area of the Business Innovation Center in North America, says Konica Minolta.

“The global robotics industry is large and fast-growing market and we are aggressively pursuing key strategic partnerships and investments in this space. Our partnership with Savioke enables us to extend our global-services capabilities, and distribution experience and positions us well to be a value-added provider in this emerging ecosystem,” commented Ekta Sahasi, vice president of the Business Innovation Center.

“In Konica Minolta, we gain a partner with a full spectrum of award-winning services infrastructure, capabilities, global reach and scale,” says Steve Cousins, CEO of Savioke.  “Our entry into service-intensive sectors such as hotels, hospitals, and elder-care facilities demands that we partner with proven leaders in these markets.”

Konica Minolta says the strategic location of its Business Innovation Center (BIC) site in Silicon Valley, California, and other BIC centers across the globe, will expand its company’s international, as well as enhance its ability to identify and capitalize on new technologies.  The BIC currently plays host to other robotics companies, including Knightscope, which develops patrolling security robots.

For more information on the Savioke robot program and the Business Innovation Center, visit Konica Minolta here.

More Resources

May 2014: Konica Minolta Opens its First Business Innovation Center in North America

February 2014: New Konica Minolta Business Innovation Centers Part of Firm’s Expansion into Services

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