Yijiahe (亿嘉和, 603666.SH), one of the largest mobile robot manufacturers in China, has spun off its smart cleaning unit as an independent operation.
The new venture, named Bib Robotics (辉煌智行), is a wholly owned subsidiary of Nanjing-headquartered Yijiahe and made its public appearance on September 21.
Bib Robotics is formerly one of Yijiahe’s five business groups, the other four focused on smart electricity, industrial transportation, intelligent energy and smart factory.
Divested and incorporated in March this year, Bib Robotics boasts three products spanning primarily two application scenarios: indoor and outdoor commercial cleaning.
At the brand launch event on September 21, the product series also underwent a major facelift and improvement in functions, with the aim to offer users a “more smart and autonomous” cleaning experience, media reported.
Plug a labor shortage
Its parent Yijiahe ventured into smart cleaning in 2022, amid surging demand for autonomous cleaning products and services to plug a labor shortage and upgrade the industry.
It rolled out the J110, J40 and J30 robotic sweepers on March 1 this year, catering to mainly four use cases, including in office buildings, transportation hubs, retail stores and supermarkets and outdoor areas.
All photos courtesy of Yijiahe/Bib Robotics
Yijiahe claimed the three products made their first public appearance at the 2023 China Clean Expo in Shanghai in late March, to much fanfare.
The timing of Yijiahe’s decision to found Bib Robotics coincided with a spike in the number of new robotic startups devoted to commercial cleaning over the past few years.
cnrobopedia counted at least five fundraising events since early this year that saw hundreds of millions of yuan flowing into domestic commercial cleaning robot startups.
According to a report by iyiou, a market intelligence provider, the market size of China’s public service robots, including commercial cleaning, began to grow at a fast clip since 2019 and is expected to increase by a CAGR of 65% in 2025.
In the commercial cleaning space, rising labor costs, hiring difficulty and the issue of performance assessment are the main pain points confronting the industry.
Many practitioners are thus compelled to purchase robotic sweepers to automate their day-to-day operation, the report pointed out.
Bib Robotics has gained an early-mover advantage thanks to the autonomous driving, simultaneous localization and mapping, AI and big data technologies possessed by its parent.
Nonetheless, it is poised to face head-on competition from formidable rivals like Gausium (高仙机器人), Ecovacs (科沃斯, 603486.SH) and Autowise.ai (仙途智能).