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Meanwhile, a Lyon-based company, imagines robots at the service of humans

Created in December 2017, Meanwhile designs autonomous mobile robots to help humans, in the industrial and hospital markets. The start-up has just won the 2020 Medi’Nov innovation prize, which will allow it to benefit from international support. It has already sold several dozen robots and aims to reach 300 units sold from 2023.

On the Doua campus in Villeurbanne, in the premises of INSA-Valor, the Meanwhile company has been designing robots since the end of 2017. “I had been working in robotics for 25 years when I decided to create Meanwhile“, explains Sacha Stojanovic, founder and CEO of the start-up. Its objective: to provide technologies at the service of humans, so that they can perform tasks with higher added value“meanwhile” (traduction by Meanwhile).

With the help of four business angels, Sacha Stojanovic founded Meanwhile to manufacture collaborative mobile robots for businesses. The task of the robot depends on the sector of activity that solicits the start-up “In industry, for example, the first sector that called on us, our robots retrieve crates from one work island and bring them to the next, which prevents human operators from doing so and reduces the risk of musculoskeletal disorders or accidents at work”, explains Sacha Stojanovic. The robot follows virtual paths to navigate and can manage on its own once it has learned its environment.