BOW begins new chapter at Sheffield Technology Parks

BOW begins new chapter at Sheffield Technology Parks

Last autumn, BOW - the company behind a revolutionary new platform for programming robots - opened the doors of its new headquarters at Sheffield Technology Parks (STP).

Founded by Daniel Camilleri in 2020, BOW (which stands for “Bettering Our Worlds” through robotics) is on a mission to unleash the full potential of robotics by creating a universal software platform to operate any model of robot, regardless of its programming language, operating system or manufacturer.

On 22 April 2024, BOW hit a major milestone, launching as the official software partner for Sarcomere Dynamics and inMotion.robotic at one of the world’s largest events for Industrial Transformation, Hannover Messe. At this pinnacle point for one of our newest residents, we take a look at BOW’s journey so far and what it has planned from its new HQ in Sheffield.

How it started

Daniel’s inspiration stemmed from his own challenges while working with a robot during his PhD at the University of Sheffield. Faced with the frustration of having to rewrite code each time a new robot replaced his existing model, he saw a gap in the market. A gap that was significantly hindering the potential benefits  of the growing robotics industry.

In September 2022, Tesla revealed the prototype for its first humanoid robot. Now, just two years later, a total of ten companies across the UK, US and Europe are creating humanoid robots demonstrating the rapid growth of the industry. However, Daniel notes, they focus on hardware - nobody is focusing on scalable software that allows different robots to be easily programmed and reprogrammed. This is where BOW comes in.

Choosing Sheffield

Through Sheffield Technology Park’s LOCATE project, we have helped BOW to land in Sheffield, making connections and providing the physical, city centre work space the team needed.

Initially, after being founded in 2020, BOW operated as a remote team scattered across the north of England, with several members of the team already based in Sheffield and Daniel commuting regularly to the University of Sheffield from Manchester.

The combination of the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC), robotics departments in both universities, and Sheffield Robotics contributes to a “very exciting” landscape of research and innovation, which was a major attraction for Daniel and his team. 

BOW identified that Sheffield was an optimal location to set up a HQ. Daniel describes Sheffield as having a “Silicon Valley vibe”, explaining:  “There’s lots of hustle going on and a vibrant startup scene.”

Access to Sheffield’s two universities also exposes BOW to top talent. With one student currently undertaking a placement year with the company, the team benefits from the energy and drive of individuals who are “eager to prove themselves” in the field.

Robotics is a truly global industry with hubs of excellence all over the world, and although the UK has a number of world-class centres of robotics research, the commercial adoption of robots within the UK is somewhat behind other countries such as China, Japan and the US. BOW’s dealmaking activity is as a result truly international , requiring frequent travel for Daniel. He emphasises, “Our approach hinges on building strong relationships, which cannot be fully achieved through video calls alone. To build and maintain trust with new clients, I need to meet with them in person, regardless of their location worldwide.”

This only motivates BOW further to get its groundbreaking software in popular use, unleashing the potential that exists in the UK’s research and innovation community.

“There is amazing research happening in the UK’s universities and very capable software being built which never makes it to commercialisation. BOW is the bridge between UK-based innovation, and global OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers),” explains Daniel, confident in BOW’s ability to change the status quo. “We will enable the innovators to catch up with and even exceed the rest of the world in robotics technology.”

Watch this space

2024 is set to be a huge year for BOW. Following the commercial launch of its software platform and major commercial partnerships under its belt already, this startup is definitely one to watch.

Find out more about BOW on the website:

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