FedEx expands robotic automation relationship with Berkshire Grey

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FedEx has signed a warrant agreement with AI-enabled supply chain robotics company Berkshire Grey, including plans for automation development and expediting the implementation of Berkshire Grey solutions in FedEx operating companies.

As part of the expansion of this relationship, Berkshire Grey and FedEx have entered into new development activities on broader AI robotic automation capabilities to help improve the safety and efficiency of FedEx package handling operations. The two companies also expect to execute a master system purchase agreement in 2022, which will expedite the procurement process for Berkshire Grey solutions across all FedEx operating companies.

Additionally, Berkshire Grey has granted FedEx a warrant to purchase common stock which vests incrementally, subject to certain terms including the ordering of and payment for Berkshire Grey AI-enabled robotic automation goods and services at any time prior to December 31, 2025. This includes full vesting of all 25 million shares subject to the warrant upon the ordering of or payment for at least US$200m of such goods and services.

As previously announced, FedEx Ground and Berkshire Grey are already working together to deploy Berkshire Grey’s Robotic Product Sortation and Identification (RPSi) systems to robotically sort small packages that arrive daily and require distribution. In addition to the recent installations at eight sortation facilities, including Queens in New York, Las Vegas in Nevada and Columbus in Ohio, FedEx Ground plans to have RPSi systems in place at select additional facilities in the network over the next 12 months.

Rebecca Yeung, corporate vice president of operations science and advanced technology at FedEx, said, “Our growing relationship with Berkshire Grey for robotic automation is a direct response to the growth of e-commerce, which has accelerated the demand for reliable automated solutions throughout all stages of the supply chain. FedEx believes that continued innovation and automation will improve efficiency, productivity and safety for its team members as they continue to keep the global supply chain moving.”

Tom Wagner, CEO of Berkshire Grey, said, “Berkshire Grey and FedEx are strategically aligned. These new agreements reflect our mutual commitment to innovations in robotic automation that can remove barriers within the supply chain, ease the physical burden on employees and streamline operations. We look forward to working together on this new program and to advancing other automation programs with FedEx moving forward.”

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