Sereact Raises Seed Funding for PickGPT AI to Make Warehouse Robots More Accessible

PickGPT is designed to allow human users to interact with pick-and-pack robots more naturally, said Sereact.


Sereact has developed AI for pick-and-place and return operations.
Sereact has raised seed funding to continue developing its PickGPT software, which uses large language models to allow users to communicate with robots through speech or text.

Startups are moving fast to apply artificial intelligence advances to commercial robotics. Sereact GmbH yesterday announced that it had obtained $5 million in seed funding. The Stuttgart, Germany-based company said it plans to use the proceeds to expand its interdisciplinary team and to support the development and international rollout of its new PickGPT offering.

Sereact said it is building AI-powered software to automate warehouse processes “in a practical, user-friendly way.” The company claimed that its technologies can help businesses operate more efficiently and continuously.

PickGPT uses large language models (LLMs) to enable users to give instructions and feedback to robots through speech or text, according to Sereact.

“By combining large language models and robotics, Sereact has created the world’s most accessible way of interacting with robots,” stated Ralf Gulde, co-founder and CEO of Sereact, in a release. “Today’s milestone will accelerate our mission of using fully autonomous robotics to overcome labor shortages, fix supply chains, and boost productivity.”

PickGPT to democratize robot access

Sereact asserted that it can help fully automate the pick-and-pack process in warehouses and manufacturing. Such tasks contribute approximately 55% of the cost of running a warehouse at a time when operators are facing the twin pressures of rising labor costs and growing demand driven by e-commerce, it said.

However, businesses have historically had to work with inflexible systems, long training periods, and changing product ranges that require significant human oversight. Sereact said its system can be deployed within a single day and result in immediate cost savings of up to 77% per pick.

Sereact added that PickGPT combines its patented work in computer vision with LLMs, the technology underpinning ChatGPT.

“PickGPT is the first commercially-available robotics transformer that enables robots to understand natural language and perceive their environment with an unprecedented level of intelligence and accuracy,” the company said. “This democratizes access to robotics by allowing users with no technical expertise to instruct and debug the system in a simple chatbot interface.”

Since its founding in 2021, Sereact said it has achieved technological milestones such as speeds of 1,500 picks per hour, collision-free picking with any gripper, and fully autonomous object manipulation. Today, Sereact serves partners across the e-commerce, manufacturing, and third-party logistics (3PL) sectors, including ZenFulfillment, Daimler Truck, Material Bank, and Schmalz.

Investors see more use cases for Sereact AI

Point Nine and Air Street Capital led Sereact's seed funding. Sereact also has offices in Mason Ohio and at MassRobotics in Boston.

“Sereact brings a new paradigm to AI and robotics,” said Ricardo Sequerra Amram, a partner at Point Nine.

“By combining vision transformers and LLMs, their solution is fast to deploy, easy to configure, and provides the critical service level required by demanding industries like logistics and manufacturing,” he added. “The research done by Ralf and Marc during their time in academia is now applied to commercial use-cases and is currently in production in live environments with top enterprise customers.”

“As businesses embrace automation, they’ll need accessible technology that’s capable of handling challenging and unpredictable real-world environments,” noted Nathan Benaich, founding partner at Air Street Capital. “The team at Sereact combines a deep understanding of the warehouse operating context with real technical ingenuity.”

“As the first business to turn the combination of LLMs and pick and pack from an academic possibility to real-world impact, they’re building a product that’s still only scratching the surface of its potential use cases,” Benaich said.

In addition to Air Street Capital and Point Nine, existing and new angels participated in Sereact's funding. They included:

  • Alexander Diehl
  • Oliver Cameron, vice president of product at Cruise and co-founder of Voyage
  • The founders of Proglove and OMA Ventures
  • Achim Baier and Wolfgang Frank at Arconsis
  • Martin Giese
  • Michael Achtelik, Jan Stumpf and Daniel Gurdan, the founders of Ascending Technologies
  • Mostafa Elsayed, co-founder and CEO of Automata
By providing AI-powered control software that enables robots to sense, reason and act, Sereact empowers machines to understand, learn, and adapt.

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Sereact has developed AI for pick-and-place and return operations.

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