Torooc, a home robot development company, announced on August 31 that it received investment from K Cube Ventures and Kakao Brain. This was a joint investment from K Cube Ventures and Kakao’s AI specialist subsidiary, Kakao Brain. The investment amount remains confidential.
Torooc was founded in January 2012 by a team with core competence in robot development technology. Torooc’s CEO, Dr. Dong-Soo Jeon, earned his Ph.D. in mechanical and aerospace engineering at Seoul National University. Hardware and software experts have gathered together to develop bio-engines for robots. Torooc is developing a robot with a temporary name, ‘LIVot’, which will be an active robot that can interact with its user. By integrating Torooc’s technology with LIVot, it can broadly understand the surrounding environment (cognitive function), actively select behavior (judgment function), and respond to it immediately (expression function).
LIVot’s natural bipedal walking and its sophisticated motor control technologies are also noteworthy. In addition, psychological expressions realized in complex facial expressions and body movements that respond to stimuli provide a deeper connection with the user. These unique features enable the evolution of the robot with its own characteristics.
Dong-Soo Jeon, CEO of Torooc, stated, “With this investment, Torooc plans to complete the development of the product in order to start selling it soon, and to get prepared for global expansion in the near future. The new technology applied to robots is useful and familiar to consumers, so we will focus on harmonizing the product and marketability so it can be easily accessible for customers”.
Ki-Jun Kim, a partner at K Cube Ventures, said, “Since the late 90’s, the development of robots that can interact with humans has been limited by a lot of technical limitations. With the increasing demand for IT devices at home that incorporate artificial intelligence, we believe that the philosophy and technology of Torooc distinguish the next generation’s home robot platform”.
(Top photo from Platum)
This article, entitled “Home robot startup Torooc landed investment from Kakao Brain and others”, was written in Korean by Stephanie Se of Platum, edited by AllTechAsia.