IRobot plans big in­vest­ment

China Daily (USA) - - BUSINESS - By FANFEIFEI fanfeifei@chi­nadaily.com.cn

iRobot Corp, the US-based ro­botic tech­nol­ogy so­lu­tions provider, which is known pri­mar­ily as a maker of ro­bot vac­uum clean­ers, is plan­ning to triple or quadru­ple its in­vest­ment in the Chi­nese mar­ket next year, in view of its av­er­age an­nual growth rate of 70 to 100 per­cent in China.

The com­pany will open its Chi­nese head­quar­ters in Shang­hai on Thurs­day to strengthen mar­ket­ing and pro­mo­tion in China and ex­tend its ro­botic prod­ucts to health­care ser­vices and the smart-home field.

“iRobot is fo­cused on sig­nif­i­cant growth op­por­tu­ni­ties in China. We are con­tin­u­ing to in­crease the size of man­u­fac­tur­ing op­er­a­tions in China as well as en­gi­neer­ing func­tions. China is an in­cred­i­bly im­por­tant part of iRobot’s strat­egy and we will con­tinue to grow,” said Colin An­gle, chair­man and CEO of iRobot.

It launched on Tues­day its Braava jet mop­ping ro­bot de­signed for the Chi­nese mar­ket. Start­ing at 1,999 yuan ($299), the com­pact ro­bot mops hard floors to re­move fine dust and stains. It cleans even in hard-to-reach places, like un­der

“We will con­tinue to di­ver­sify our home ro­bot of­fer­ings and iden­tify new­prod­uct cat­e­gories tai­lored for Chi­nese con­sumers,” said An­gle.

An­gle em­pha­sized that they are grow­ing their in­vest­ment in China very quickly and that es­tab­lish­ing the head­quar­ters in China is just the next step of their growth strat­egy.

“We will prob­a­bly spend three to four times as much as money on mar­ket­ing and ad­ver­tis­ing in 2017 as we did in 2016.”

He also es­ti­mated the over­all growth of home ro­bots glob­ally is about 25 per­cent. In China, the growth rate is very fast, close to 70 or 100 per­cent. cab­i­nets and fur­ni­ture.

start­ing price of Braava jet mop­ping ro­bot

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