Detroit-based robotics and automation start-up, RoboTire, announced the closing of a $7.5M Series A round led by The Reinalt-Thomas Corporation – a world-leading independent tire retailer, 640 Oxford Ventures and Automotive Ventures also participated in the round. This announcement was made by RoboTire CEO Victor Darolfi.
Darolfi said, “This is a pivotal moment for RoboTire and sets us on a path to further transform vehicle maintenance. Our focus is to revolutionize the way tires are changed and collaborating with Discount Tire—an iconic automotive and tire industry leader—will make our innovative technology more widely available to consumers who need both speed and service as part of their daily lives. We are immensely proud to receive this backing from our investors and know this is just the first turn down a long road to success for our company.”
Tom Williams, chief experience officer at Discount Tire, said, “Discount Tire is excited to support RoboTire in the development of new and innovative technologies that drive a better customer experience. As customer expectations around the ‘buy and book online’ experience and our ability to deliver reduced wait times continue to grow, we will continue to pursue automation and enhancements that ensure an inviting, easy, and safe experience for all our customers.”
Using robots, RoboTire’s patented system can change tires in a fraction of the time it takes human operators — reducing experience times from multiple hours to under 15 minutes. This manufacturing-level automation technology is transforming fleet operators, automotive service providers, and tire and wheel shops’ traditional financial and operational concerns.
Will Mapes, RoboTire’s chief operating officer, said, “We see RoboTire as transformative – not only for the tire industry but for the development of smarter automotive technologies and future-proofing the workforce of skilled technicians, which our industry must do a better job recruiting, training and retaining. We’re excited to build out and scale our operations and team in Detroit and in Michigan, the heart of American automotive engineering, with the support of our new partners.”