Meet Sam Van Essen, he is currently doing his diploma in Mechatronics and Robotics at British Columbia Institute of Technology. His areas of expertise include Programming, Electronics, Electrical, and Mechanical. Sam Van Essen has recently joined our team as a Mechatronics Technician.
As a student, Sam Van Essen has gained abundant knowledge and practical skills in designing and operating mechatronic systems. He also worked as a laborer in manufacturing settings; during this time, he found a particular interest in manufacturing and automation which lead him to Eleos Robotics.
He enjoys the atmosphere at Eleos, his tasks are very diverse which he sees it as an opportunity to gain more knowledge and enhance the skills required for this field. We are very excited to have him with us, welcome to the team!
As mentioned in our previous blog, Eleos Robotics was planning to go public, today those plans are becoming a reality. Instead of becoming public through a traditional initial public offer (IPO), the company has decided to become public through a reverse takeover (RTO). Unlike an IPO, an RTO requires a public listed (shell) company to acquire Eleos Robotics, as well as the owner of Eleos Robotics to buy the majority shares of that publicly traded company.
After many discussions between shareholders and stakeholders, Eleos Robotics would like to announce that the company will be acquired by Glenbriar Technologies Inc. subject to GTI AGM and CSE approval. Glenbriar’s common shares are currently listed under the Canadian Securities Exchange, trading symbol GTI.
There are certain development milestones the company must meet before the transaction is completed; these milestones may take up to a year to achieve. A shareholder meeting will soon be taking place to obtain shareholder approval of the transaction and its requirements. The transaction will follow the policies from the Canadian Securities Exchange (CSE). It is estimated that Eleos Robotics will be able to raise up to $1,500,000 in this private placement. Around half of the funds have already been subscribed.
This is a huge step forward for Eleos Robotics. Everybody in the team is excited about the future of the company. The team is currently working hard on bringing RoboWeeder to its full potential. There have been more software upgrades made to our RoboWeeder prototype. More posts about current upgrades will be coming soon. Check our website and Tumblr account for more news to come!
Eleos Robotics have been experiencing enormous growth, as mentioned in our previous blog, the company has entered into an agreement to be acquired by Glenbriar Technologies Inc. subject to GTI AGM and CSE approval. This implies higher productivity and accelerated growth is expected from Eleos. To ensure RoboWeeder becomes the global standard for agri-tech, Eleos Robotics has been hiring people with years of multi-disciplinary expertise. We would like you to meet them:
Dr. Charles Foell lll, Data Scientist
Dr. Foell has many areas of expertise, these include Physics, Optic, Computer Vision, Machine Vision, and Data Science.
He obtained a Ph.D. in Optical Physics from the University of British Columbia, his Ph.D. research focused on the “integration and modeling of nano meter-sized single photon emitters (colloidal quantum dots) in silicon photonic circuits for integrated quantum optics”.
Dr. Foell has been working in the industry since 2013, since then he has gained abundant knowledge and experience in computer vision, machine vision, software, data science, data analysis, and data engineering.
Agricultural Technology (Agri Tech) is an industry that caught his attention for a long time, he considered all the practical and ethical benefits that this industry could bring to people. When he heard about Eleos Robotics, he was immediately interested and decided to contact Eleos Robotics’ CEO.
Although he already had a great interest in the industry and the company, Dr. Foell decided to join the team because of the “mission and promise of pesticide-free farming”. He also valued the talented people working for Eleos and thought he could bring great value to the company.
Iain Kay, Software Developer
Mr. Kay has four years of experience doing disaster control in many fields. He is currently working as a software developer at Eleos. His areas of expertise include App Development, Web Crawling, Artificial Intelligence, Computer Vision, and Big Data Processing.
He feels working with Eleos Robotics will give him the opportunity to work on automation involving ROS. Mr. Kay has a particular interest working in autonomous navigation which is an area he would like to explore in-depth and one of the reasons he decided to join the team.
As of right now, Mr. Kay would like to build “a functional autonomous robot stack implementing cutting edge open source Google technologies with our own computer vision model and navigation components”.
Simran Saggu, Software Developer
Mr. Saggu is currently working for Eleos Robotics as a software developer. He has been working in the industry for a couple of years. He considers himself to be a good problem solver as he feels he has “a knack for it”. Mr. Saggu’s interest in robots led him to join the team, one of his goals is to give life to many of them.
He feels building robots is a very complex process and one of the problems he wants to be good at solving. He believes he will be able to develop his skills further and expand his knowledge of robots by working for Eleos Robotics.
This year #BCTECHSummit took place at Vancouver Convention Centre from March 11 to March 13, 2019. This is the largest annual innovation conference in all Western Canada. Many businesses had the opportunity to showcase their latest innovations. Like Eleos Robotics, these companies aim to solve today’s worldwide challenges.
This conference offered Eleos Robotics the opportunity to showcase its current RoboWeeder prototype to many industry leaders, entrepreneurs, investors, government officials, and students. Eleos is currently working with four UFV engineering students and two professors on enhancing RoboWeeder’s electrical system and robotic arm modeling software.
Although #BCTECHSummit had the top emerging tech talent on display, RoboWeeder’s technology was able to attract many people as it can distinguish different types of weeds with the use of a camera and image recognition. RoboWeeder targets the weeds’ reproductive tissue and destroys them by radiating direct energy that heats them up dielectrically. Although there are many concerns regarding the labour shortage in the agricultural industry, RoboWeeder was able to show how its autonomy will alleviate the upcoming labour crisis in this sector.
Moreover, as the demand for ethically sourced products and sustainability practices increase, more companies will want to become eco-friendlier. This is why RoboWeeder is a great investment; it allows organizations to go fully organic while also earning a profit. RoboWeeder’s technology makes herbicides obsolete and takes care of a 10-acre area for an entire growing season! It helps growers save time and money while also helping them achieve production and sustainability goals.
Eleos Robotics is happy to announce that the company is going public. More details about this event will be released shortly so stay tuned! Thank you to everyone who came to visit our booth, we had a blast! Eleos would also like to thank the Government of British Columbia and Innovate BC for delivering such an amazing event. See you next year!
From January 24 to January 26, 2019, Eleos Robotics showcased its latest Culture Bot prototype, now called RoboWeeder, at the Pacific Agricultural Show. This trade show aimed to demonstrate the most innovative technology available for the agricultural industry. It took place in Abbotsford at the Tradex Exhibition Centre, where Eleos Robotics had to compete with over 300 other exhibitors. Yet, RoboWeeder gained the attraction of many growers due to its initiative on making weeding more efficient for growers.
Although many great improvements have been made in the agricultural industry, not many companies had focused on weeding, which is one of the most laborious and expensive aspects of growing products such as grapes or berries. Weeding can be time-consuming, expensive, and cause many operational headaches. Additionally, current solutions to weeding are not sustainable, herbicides are not effective in the long-run as weeds become more resistant to them over time.
Moreover, global trends in the agricultural sector show that fewer people want to work in this sector, causing a big labour shortage in the future. This is why RoboWeeder represents a great solution for growers who are concerned with the coming labour crisis, production efficiency, and sustainability. RoboWeeder is fully automated and organic. Its technology makes herbicides obsolete, it also allows growers to save money and time, as RoboWeeder takes care of a 10-acre area for the entire growing season unmanned and without supervision. This eliminates the operational headaches and reduces the labour expenses while allowing growers to become fully eco-friendly.
Eleos’ vision and technology gained the attention of many growers. This event has helped Eleos take another step closer to success. Eleos Robotics would like to thank the Tradex for hosting such an amazing event. We are very proud to be part of this amazing community.
On September 20, 2018, Eleos Robotics had the amazing opportunity to attend the FVTEch Forum 2018. This event aimed to attract many businesses, entrepreneurs, key influencers, and community stakeholders to share an environment of growth and innovation with local tech influencers. This event took place in Mission, BC where the latest design of Eleos Robotics’ Culture Bot was showcased. Amongst many other incredible projects, Culture Bot was one of the focal points of technologies on display.
Throughout the day, Culture Bot gained many people’s interest and even better, it gained a huge amount of support from the Fraser Valley. This event allowed Eleos Robotics to share its vision on the Agri-Tech sector. This led to optimistic conversations with stakeholders. Also, this event gave Eleos Robotics the opportunity to show its latest Culture Bot prototype to people who have invested on it, allowing Eleos to show new updates and developments that have enhanced the robot’s performance.
Currently, Fraser Valley is showing great initiative on fostering technology and innovation. There is a lot of opportunity for growth in the technology sector in the Fraser Valley and we are proud to be part of this growth. We would like to thank the XLRator and the District of Mission for hosting such an amazing event, we had a blast!
As of today, many growers use tractors that spray herbicides to protect their crops, herbicides are detrimental to the environment and our health. Not to mention, those tractors use a lot of greenhouse gas emitting fossil fuels. Herbicides represent a very high expense to growers and they are not sustainable. However, Culture Bot, the autonomous weeding robot, will save many growers time and money. Its disruptive technology will make herbicides obsolete. It targets and destroys weeds and including its reproductive tissue preventing regrowth in many cases.
Culture Bot is capable of maintaining a 10-acre weed-free zone with a technology that is clean and sustainable. Because our advanced technology will solve many pressing issues in the agriculture industry, the National Research Council Canada (NRC) has awarded Eleos Robotics with $10,000 through the Industrial Research Assistance Program (IRAP).
This program aims to accelerate the growth of companies developing innovative, novel, and eco-friendly technologies. Eleos Robotics demonstrated that its technology will have a positive impact on agricultural production, create jobs for Canadians, and reduce chemicals and greenhouse emissions.
The beneficiary of this award was Gordon Ho, an SFU System Engineer graduate with nearly a decade of experience in robotics. Mr. Ho has participated in competitive robotics competitions since high school. He has been to the world championships four times where he has won first place. Mr. Ho enjoys building and designing robots and will continue his work on bringing Culture Bot closer to field trials. He is currently competing in a global “battle-bots” competition.
Eleos Robotics would like to thank the NRC-IRAP for helping our business grow! Huge thanks to Cynthia Shippam-Brett and Mehrzad Movassaghi for giving Eleos Robotics direction; your expert criticism and support has helped us define and enhance our business!
On the week of June 11, 2018, Eleos Robotics had the amazing opportunity to be part of AgriNEST in France. Every year they gather international agriculture technology start-ups that seem to be a good fit for the French market. AgriNEST helps startups explore the French Ag Tech sector and build meaningful contacts with Europe’s top industry leaders. These companies met at the personal residence of the Ambassador of Canada to France: Isabel Hudon.
Throughout the tour, Yahoel Van Essen, Founder and CEO of Eleos Robotics had many business meetings with top industry leaders in agriculture between the cities of Paris and Dijon. Mr. Van Essen met some of the largest agriculture cooperatives in France. Growers in the Côte de Nuit region showed a lot of interest in all the work Eleos Robotics has accomplished and were thrilled about Culture Bot.
Mr. Van Essen showed how Culture Bot’s technology makes herbicides obsolete, increases production, and helps growers save a lot of money. Amongst many other competitors, Eleos Robotics ranked in third place overall in a global catchment. During this tour, Mr. Van Essen met with many global organizations including one of Europe’s largest agricultural machinery companies.
On Tuesday, June 12, 2018, Eleos Robotics participated on LF Day. This is an international agriculture technology tradeshow at La Cité des science. Mr. Van Essen pitched the company in the auditorium, exposing Eleos Robotics to many investors, entrepreneurs, and other large organizations. See startup line-up here.
This tour gave Eleos Robotics many opportunities to be globally known and to build connections with many European industry leaders. Eleos Robotics would like to thank Business France for sponsoring the tour and Jean-Pascal Saucier for his amazing support.
First of all, Eleos Robotics would like to thank the Government of British Columbia and the BC Innovation Council for delivering such an amazing event. BC Tech Summit is the largest technology conference in the Western provinces of Canada. The conference was held during May 14-16, 2018 at Vancouver Convention Centre. This tradeshow allowed Eleos to engage with many people and share its vision with them.
BC Tech represented a great opportunity for Eleos to present its business to many investors, entrepreneurs, and other businesses. Eleos’ latest Culture Bot prototype was present and attracted many businesses. They were able to see how Eleos technology is capable of lowering costs to their businesses, increase production, and reduce headaches.
This robot is capable of distinguishing different types of weeds by using a camera and image recognition, it then targets the weeds’ reproductive tissue and destroys them by radiating direct energy that heats them up dielectrically. Something that got people’s attention was how autonomous this robot is. A video showed them what Culture Bot does when is low on battery. The robot navigates back to its charging station using GPS and machine vision, it plugs itself in and goes back to work when is fully charged.
Eleos team has been working really hard on pushing this project forward. As of right now, Eleos is working on gathering funds for Culture Bot’s field stage. This is new and exciting stage is estimated to happen in the summer of 2019. Lastly, Eleos would like to thank everyone who came to visit our booth, it was a pleasure getting to know you all. See you next time!
We are very excited to announce that our first tradeshow was a success. On July 17 and 18, 2017, Eleos Robotics attended BC Wine and Grape Council’s Enology Viticulture Conference & Tradeshow. This tradeshow allowed Eleos Robotics to showcase its first prototype of Culture Bot which had a great impact amongst grape growers. They were able to see how Culture Bot laser technology can detect and eliminate weeds. Culture Bot’s high-end technology will eliminate the need for growers to use expensive herbicides.
Because Culture Bot is fully automated, growers were able to see how Eleos Robotics can save them time, increase their productivity, and reduce labour. Also, Culture Bot is 100 percent eco-friendly which represented a great opportunity for growers who were looking to go organic and have an equipment that is sustainable.
We would like to thank BCWGC for hosting such an amazing show and Kate Durisek for her amazing support. We can’t wait for next year’s tradeshow. If you are interested in this tradeshow and are looking to have your company exhibited, please click here.
As of right now, we have our first prototype of Culture Bot, but it still needs more research and development. Our team has been working very hard on the enhancement of Culture Bot, there has been many ups and downs, but with the help of many organizations, our technology has been moving forward. We plan to have an updated prototype by September 2017, stay tuned for more updates.
We would like to thank Surrey Board of Trade (SBOT) for their kind support. On November 16, 2017, SBOT’s Agriculture Industry Reception helped Eleos Robotics connect with many businesses who are excited about Culture Bot. Although our prototype was not present due to undergoing upgrades, Eleos was able to attract many businesses. Growers were really interested in Culture Bot and our technology.
More and more growers are finding Culture Bot to be a more effective and eco-friendly solution to their work. With Culture Bot, not only will they be able to have more green practices in their organizations, but they will be reducing many headaches. One of the features that attracted growers was its newly developed directed energy technology, as this technology will help them control and eliminate weeds.
Currently, Eleos is working on developing an autonomous parking and charging technology. This technology will allow Culture Bot to know when it needs to be re-charged. Because our robot is fully automated, this technology will enable the robot to go back to its charging station and plug itself in. We expect this technology to be fully developed by the end of 2018.
Eleos Robotics attended the Pacific Agriculture Tradeshow on January 25-27, 2018. The tradeshow was a total success, within a day and a half, Eleos was able to add 20 growers to the pre-sale waitlist. As the weeks have gone by, more than half of them have already signed letters of intent.
Growers were really enthusiastic to know that soon they will be able to reduce their costs while also helping the environment. They feel very comfortable with Culture Bot, as it is one of the most sustainable products going to market that will help them maximize productivity. Growers will be able to eliminate all herbicides with a product that is 100 percent eco-friendly. Most importantly, these growers will finally eliminate all the headaches that weeding can cause. They will be able to go or stay organic while also working more efficiently. Eleos Robotics will transform growers’ value chain with Culture Bot.
Culture Bot had one of its highest impacts yet at the “Innovation Day” held by the BC Ministry of Agriculture. Our prototype has gone through many upgrades. During this event, we had our autonomous charging station and robot prototype, which received a huge positive response. Growers were lining up to find out more about our technology. The autonomous charging station technology notifies the robot when it needs to be charged, it then sends coordinates to the nearest charging station. In response, the robot will go to the charging station, plug itself in, and get back to work as soon as its fully charged.
Eleos Robotics feels very blessed with all the support that has received. We believe in a near future, Eleos will have more sustainable machinery that will help the world. We would like to thank BC Ministry of Agriculture for hosting such an amazing event and Mike Manion from BC Innovation Council for his amazing support.
We will continue to enhance our Culture Bot prototype. We are very thankful for all the amazing feedback from the tradeshow; our robot will soon be optimized to be amphibious and all-terrain. More updates will be coming soon, stay tuned.
As our funds grow so does our technology. We would like to thank NSERC for supporting Eleos Robotics and our research. The Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) fosters innovation by supporting students and their breakthrough research. We would also like to thank the Director of the Institute of Sustainable Horticulture at Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU), Deborah Henderson, and Head of Computer Sciences, Mandeep Pannu, for their time and expertise.
As of December 1, 2017, KPU will be doing research and development for our plant recognition technology and providing horticultural advice. This is a really exciting moment for Eleos Robotics, as we will have our core technology developed by experienced PhDs in Horticulture and Computer Sciences. They will also provide training to our future employees which will help with Culture Bot’s growth.
We have two exciting news to announce. On October 1, 2017, Mitacs awarded Eleos Robotics with $10,0000. Mitacs is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to delivering research and training programs to support innovation in Canada. We would like to thank Mitacs for supporting our work. This grant will help with the enhancement of our Culture Bot prototype.
The second big news is that our team is getting bigger. We would like to welcome Gordon Ho to Eleos Robotics.
Mr. Ho has a Systems Engineering degree from Simon Fraser University (SFU). His love for robotics has carried with him since high school. In his second year at SFU, Mr. Ho started a robotics club and on October 1, 2017, he joined our team. The reason that drew him to Eleos Robotics was our leading-edge technology. He is glad to be working for a company that allows him to work in the areas that he loves, such as designing and building robots.
More than being able to build robots, he is glad to be working for a company that is sustainable for the environment and that will be of great help to farmers in reducing their costs, eliminating pesticides and herbicides, and increasing their productivity.
Welcome, Gordon! Thank you for joining our team in this exciting journey!
We would like to thank the Investment Agriculture Foundation of BC (IAFBC) for their generous contribution toward Eleos’ growth. On June 15, 2017, the Agri-Food Environmental Initiative (AEI) program gave Eleos a grant for $25,887.50.
The AEI program is designed to support organizations that have innovative solutions to pressing environmental issues. Its mission consists of assisting producers, processors, agri-businesses, and rural communities in developing solutions that will benefit the agricultural industry in British Columbia.
Although this program is highly competitive, Eleos Robotics was able to win the grant with its innovative technology that eliminates weeds, increases productivity, and reduces labour. The money will go towards prototyping and research and development.
We are proud to announce that on May 30, 2017, Eleos Robotics signed a contract for angel investment. This collaboration allowed Eleos Robotics to close its first funding round
Eleos Robotics raised a total amount of $165,000. This investment was funded by a private investor from the NBA. The money will go towards research and development, prototyping, and marketing. We are excited about the future of Eleos Robotics and hope you enjoy this journey with us.
Eleos Robotics’ CEO, Yahoel Van Essen, graduated from the AG-Tech Venture Acceleration Program (AVAP) on June 12, 2017. This program is designed to support entrepreneurs with start-up businesses in agriculture and technology. AVAP supports innovative projects by providing coaching and resources to maximize potential and accelerate growth.
The AVAP mentoring was provided by serial entrepreneurs. Peter Briscoe, together with Mike Manion, helped Eleos improve its investor relations, marketing communication, and most importantly, its business model. This improved business model consists of having the main focus on eliminating weeds. Once Eleos has the technology capable of eliminating weeds, more planning will go on creating an all-in-one solution for pest management on farms.
Eleos would like to thank Founder of SRCTec, Raymond Szabada, for helping entrepreneurs maximize their true potential through programs like the AVAP. This experience has been extraordinary, we would also like to thank Peter Briscoe [mo1] and Mike Manion for their unwavering support and exceptional mentoring.
SRCTec is a non-for-profit organization administrated by technology executives. They focus on attracting technology-based investments to the “Region”. The Region includes Cities of Abbotsford, Chilliwack, and Maple Ridge, the District of Mission, and the Township of Langley.
We have really exciting news to share. On June 20, 2017, Eleos Robotics was granted $40,000 from the Abbotsford Community Foundation (ACF) through the Agriculture Enhancement Grants Program. This grant will go towards our research and development and prototyping.
As stated by ACF Executive Director Wendy Neufeld, this program focuses on “new technology with an environmental and sustainability focus”. In order to receive the grant, companies had to demonstrate how their innovative solutions will benefit Abbotsford’s community and the agricultural sector. Although this program is very competitive, Eleos Robotics was chosen for its Culture Bot project. This project will help growers reduce labour, save time, increase productivity, and eliminate headaches.
Culture Bot is a fully automated robot, it protects crops and is 100 percent eco-friendly. It scans, detects, and identifies different kinds of weeds using advanced imaging technology and AI. Culture Bot is able to detect weeds with precision and eliminate them with ease.
We would like to thank Abbotsford Community Foundation and Wendy Neufeld for choosing Eleos Robotics and for helping us grow.