Caterpillar Acquires Autonomy Expertise for Heavy Industry

This article first appeared on the BNEF mobile app and the Bloomberg Terminal.

  • Company acquires some assets, employees of Marble Robot
  • Plan is to build autonomous trucks to support heavy industry

The mining sector has the highest adoption of off-road autonomous vehicles, supplied by industrials like Caterpillar and Komatsu. Looking to expand to new sectors, Caterpillar recently acquired Marble Robot to bring autonomous trucking to the construction, quarry and waste industries.

Rather than buy the whole company, Caterpillar acquired ‘select assets and hired employees’ from Marble Robot to help build fully integrated autonomous trucks for heavy industry. The value of the acquisition is not disclosed. Marble was last valued in 2018 at $37 million.

Caterpillar can currently monitor and manage autonomous vehicles from control centers, which reduces the number of people on site and lowers operating costs. Demand for remote operations and automation technologies has grown throughout recent lockdowns.

The level of digitalization in construction, quarries and waste sectors is still low. Caterpillar hopes its autonomy offerings will help these sectors optimize operations and worker productivity as it has done in the mining sector.

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