Denmark

Thomas Visti, CEO, and Niels Jul Jacobsen, CSO, Mobile Industrial Robots ApS

Thomas Visti knew Niels Jul Jacobsen has never been the type to follow convention. When Niels first saw the movie Star Wars, he fell in love with R2-D2 rather than Princess Leia. His love of robots led him to start his own robotics company with Thomas, who already had an excellent record at global sales and marketing and a commercial understanding of the sector.

Niels founded Mobile Industrial Robots (MiR) in 2013 with the aim of providing companies with a simple-to-use, flexible and safe robot for internal transport needs. It was a radical new design that avoided the traditional pitfalls of robotics being too difficult to install and program.

The duo’s ability to create a global network, combined with simplifying their products, has paid off, with MiR now counting large multinationals as clients. The company has grown quickly. From 2016 to 2017, sales tripled from US$4m to US$12m. In 2018, sales nearly tripled again with revenues of US$31m, with a quarter of those sales coming from the United States.

Niels’ and Thomas’ success has not gone unnoticed — in April 2018, MiR was acquired by NYSE-listed Teradyne for US$270m.

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