Intel, through its unit Intel Capital, has made an equity investment of $9m in artificial intelligence (AI) robotics company Figure.

The investment is part of Figure’s recently announced $70m Series A funding round.

With the capital infusion, the chip manufacturing major is joining other Figure investors such as Aliya Capital, Bold Capital Partners, Brett Adcock, FJ labs, Parkway Venture Capital, Tamarack Global, and Till Reuter, former CEO of KUKA Robotics.

Figure will use the proceeds to accelerate the development of its autonomous humanoid robot, called Figure 01, expand the AI data pipeline for autonomous operations, get the company closer to commercialisation and strengthen its balance sheet.

Intel Capital managing director Mark Lydon said: “Intel Capital is constantly searching for companies that push the boundaries of innovation, and we believe that Figure has the potential to shift the way the world thinks about artificial intelligence.

“Figure’s focus on enhancing the labour economy is an essential part of our future, and we look forward to being at the forefront to support humanoid development.”  

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By GlobalData

The company said that Figure 01 just started the testing phase, and less than a year after the company was founded, in May, the robot took its first walking steps.

Initially, the company plans to deploy its humanoid robot into the workforce to address the labour shortages and support the global supply chain.

Figure founder and CEO Brett Adcock said: “Intel Capital is at the forefront of making big, bold frontier bets and we are excited to share the same vision of a better future.

“This investment along with the global resources and expertise of the Intel team will help accelerate the growth and success of Figure.”