The Yaskawa Electric Corporation from Japan, a global leader in planning and manufacturing industrial robots, is set to invest tens of millions of shekels in an Israeli company in the robotics industry.
The company, ARGO Medical Technologies, has partnered with Yaskawa as it continues the global expansion of its ReWalk exoskeleton device which enables individuals with lower limb disabilities such as paraplegia to walk.
Yaskawa has made a significant capital investment into the ReWalk exoskeleton technology and will also serve as the exclusive distributor for the ReWalk in Japan, China, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, and Korea, the company said in a statement.
"This strategic partnership will bring significant value through the synergy of Yaskawa's technology in the general field of robotics combined with our expertise in the human factors and treatment of spinal cord injuries," said ARGO CEO Larry Jasinski. "We look forward to this mutually beneficial partnership as we enter a new phase of development and growth."
In 2008 Yaskawa bought the shares of RoboGroup, a public company traded in Tel Aviv, in a subsidiary which was a partnership between Yaskawa and RoboGroup and developed motion control technologies integrated into the Japanese giant's products, at an investment of some NIS 20 million (about $5.7 million).
After the acquisition, the purchased company's name was changed to Yaskawa Europe Technology and it became a subsidiary of global Yaskawa in Israel.
The Japanese robotics giant was founded 93 years ago. It employs 8,000 workers and its market value stands at $3.5 billion. Its activity in Israel has been run since 2005 by CEO Arik Dan, who studied Japanese and business administration at Keio University in Tokyo.
"Yaskawa sees great importance in increasing its investments in Israel in light of the country's importance as a global robotics development center. Yaskawa's goal is not to draw technologies and knowledge to Japan, but rather to develop the local company as a global development and marketing center."