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We’re not just passionate about food and technology

We’re passionate about the future

Our Vision

At Karakuri we’re committed to changing the way the world prepares, offers, and experiences convenience food.

Reduce food waste

Estimates vary, but approximately one third of all of the food produced on our planet is wasted each year. Overproduction of food has a huge environmental impact. Increased water and land usage, excessive carbon footprint, and increased methane production are critical issues caused by excessive waste.

By precisely tracking quantities required and using AI to predict future requirements, Karakuri’s systems help to improve the food supply chain, reducing the need for overstocking and waste.

Improve choice and quality

With consumers demanding more personalized, higher quality meals, restaurants are under pressure to keep pace. But they must almost balance the rising staffing costs driven by increasingly individualized menus.

Karakuri’s automation systems makes choice and meal personalization a reality for every diner, regardless of price point. Detailed data logging of the quantities and qualities of foods used in each meal ensure each restaurant delivers unique, high quality dishes on time, every time.

Improve staff well-being

Many of the daily tasks performed in food production are boring, repetitive, and time-consuming. Karakuri’s robots can carry out these tasks quickly and consistently, alleviating staff members from high volume manual jobs and enabling them to spend more time with customers, and on higher value, more creative roles.

By automating certain tasks, Karakuri’s systems empower businesses to create a more fulfilling working environment, helping to improve employee welfare and job satisfaction, while increasing productivity and staff retention.

Enable healthier eating

Alongside meal customization, consumer demand for information around nutritional content and ingredients continues to increase. Karakuri’s robots can prepare a near-endless list of personalized meals with 100% accuracy of ingredients and portion size.

This level of ultra-personalisation, supported by precise nutrition information for every meal, allows diners to design their meal for their individualised eating needs. And it enables business to provide customers with total transparency of ingredients, nutrients, calories, and quantities.

Management Team

Barney Wragg

CEO & Co-founder

Barney founded his first business in the bars and nightclubs of the north of England in the 1980s aged just 16. He was a pre-IPO team member at ARM and was responsible for the adoption of the ARM processor in the Apple iPod. Barney was one of the first adopters of digital technologies in the music business and grew revenues for the world’s largest record company from zero to $2bn in six years. He has held board-level positions in several multinational media companies, and recently completed a £200m turnaround of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s global businesses. He is a passionate foodie and advises a number of independent restaurants.

Dr Peter Schroder

CTO

Dr Peter Schroder is McLarens’ former chief engineer for the racing team and CTO for its in-house incubator (Mclaren Applied). Peter Schroder has a proven track record of innovation in product development, engineering, data and analytics across multiple markets including Automotive, Motorsport, Transport, IOT, Aviation & Health. During his time as chief engineer for the Formula 1 team Peter oversaw the development and delivery of leading-edge technology across all aspects of car and race operations, including the design of the McLaren-Honda Formula 1 energy recovery system. He was also responsible for driving innovation in McLaren's incubator arm, McLaren Applied, which enabled the creation of high-performance products intended to use F1 technologies to disrupt other established markets.

Roshni Patel

Roshni Patel

CFO

Roshni has held various senior finance positions across a number of corporates and SMEs. She spent several years at Universal Music Group where she integrated the EMI Group finance function into UMG and subsequently managed the finance function of the global physical and digital supply chain. She then went on to work with fast growth SMEs where she built finance teams whilst implementing processes to add value in fast-changing business environments. She has a breadth of experience with building and transforming finance and operational functions whilst improving processes along with acquisition and sale of companies.

Richard Williams

Richard Williams

Head of Mechatronics

Richard began his career in academia at the University of Liverpool where he taught robotics and completed his PhD in Computer Science, with a research focus in Robotics and Computer Vision. Alongside this he took leading roles in a range of innovative robotics projects including winning several international robotics competitions with the smARTLab@work team, and leading development of the software for the ‘Sprung a Leak’ robotic art installation which exhibited worldwide following an acclaimed run at Tate Liverpool. Richard’s passion for taking robots out of the lab and bringing them into the real world brought him to work in industry with Intelligent Robots, a London-based startup developing autonomous mobile robots for the retail logistics sector. Richard led the development team seeing the company through to completion of their first production model as well as leading a successful Innovate UK project.

Board Members

Brent Hoberman

Chairman & Co-founder

Co-Founder and CEO of Lastminute.com, Brent grew the company from zero to over $2bn in revenue. Brent founded and chairs Founders Forum, a series of invite-only, not-for-profit events for a private network of the world’s leading digital and technology entrepreneurs. As part of the Founders Family, Brent co-founded and chairs Founders Factory incubation and seed fund, and founded First Minute Capital, a $100m early-stage VC fund.

Mike Muller

Co-founder
ARM
Senior Advisor (Former Interim CTO)
Karakuri

Mike was a co-founder of ARM in 1990. In 2016 Arm Holdings plc, by then a FTSE 50 company, was acquired by Softbank for £24 billion. He remains a director of the operating subsidiary. He is a non-executive director of Cambridge Innovation Capital an £150M+ investment fund that invests in high-growth technology companies, a member of the IEEE Industry Advisory Board (IAB) which supports the IEEE by advising on the latest trends, global challenges, and the impact of technology on jobs and the economy, a trustee of two charities the David Parr House and The Cambridge Centre for Computing History, and a scale-up business fellows for the RCA supporting founders and providing insights to help these companies grow.

Duncan Tatton-Brown

Duncan Tatton-Brown

Non-Executive Director

Duncan was previously Group Finance Director of Kingfisher plc, one of the world’s largest home improvement retailers. He has also been Chief Financial Officer of Fitness First plc, Finance Director of B&Q plc, Chief Financial Officer of Virgin Entertainment Group and held various senior finance positions at Burton Group plc. He has previously held Non-Executive Director positions at Rentokil Initial plc and ZPG plc.

Michael Bornhaeusseur

Michael Bornhaeusser

Non-Executive Director

Michael Bornhaeusser is a serial entrepreneur who started his first tech-venture in 1994 in Switzerland with the co-founding of MMK AG which became Pixelpark Switzerland and was floated in 1999 at the German Stock Exchange. He now leads the Venture Capital Club Deals at BULB CAPITAL and holds several board seats and was the founding president of i-net Innovation Networks, the Swiss innovation development platform of the Swiss government.

Advisory Committee

Heston Blumenthal OBE

Culinary Alchemist
Michelin-starred Chef & Restaurateur

Internationally famous for his award-winning, 3 Michelin-starred The Fat Duck in Berkshire, Heston Blumenthal is considered to be one of the best and most influential chefs of his generation. Completely self-taught, he has pushed the boundaries of a traditional kitchen and changed the way people cook and think about eating. After extensive academic research, Heston was the first chef to affirm that eating is a ‘Multi -Sensory experience’. He advocates scientific understanding in cooking, for which he has been awarded honorary degrees from Reading, Bristol and London universities and was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry. He now brings to Karakuri his world-leading understanding of the intricacies of how science and food work together.

Sarah MacDonald

Sarah MacDonald

Chief Legal Officer
KFC (Yum Brands!) Western Europe

Sarah is Chief Legal Officer for KFC (Yum Brands!) Western Europe and is responsible for all legal and regulatory matters across 13 Jurisdictions divided into six markets. The Western Europe business is a multi-billion pound business which incorporates over 1500 restaurants and employs over 40,000 people. Prior to KFC, Sarah worked as Chief Counsel (Commercial & Operations) at BT plc responsible for end to end advice across the Consumer business. Prior to BT, she worked as a corporate solicitor at CMS LLP (London) advising on major M&A for a range of sectors including a secondment to AIG (London/New York). Sarah now brings her extensive legal knowledge and experience to Karakuri.

Simon Watt

Co-founder
Karakuri

Simon was employee number 24 at ARM where he held a number of positions including Head of Research. He was responsible for many of ARM’s technologies, from cache architectures to TrustZone - ARM’s security architecture for the trusted computing ecosystem. In 2004 he joined Barney working at Universal Music Group, where he spent 11 years as Head of Technology. In 2018 he co-founded Karakuri with Barney Wragg, leaving in 2020 for personal reasons.

Paul Clarke

CTO
Ocado

Paul is Chief Technology Officer at Ocado, the world's largest online-only grocery retailer. After joining Ocado in 2006, Paul initially worked on warehouse control systems and then joined the team designing Ocado’s next highly automated fulfilment centre. After establishing new teams for Simulation and Mobile development, Paul then co-wrote the first of Ocado’s award winning mobile apps. Ocado Technology, with its 1300 software engineers and other IT specialists, is responsible for building all the software and IT infrastructure that powers Ocado's end-to-end e-commerce, fulfilment and logistics platform. Ocado are now busy signing deals with large bricks and mortar grocery retailers around the world who wish to use the Ocado Smart Platform to operate online grocery scalably and profitably. Paul's current role includes exploring opportunities to use Ocado's technologies to disrupt other sectors and the technology vision and future proofing of the business.

Professor David Lane

Founder and Director
Edinburgh Centre for Robotics

David is passionate about robotics and AI (RAI) and transforming its rich research into useful products and services that serve today’s unmet needs. His breadth of entrepreneurship includes leading technology startups into high-growth businesses which earned him the 2011 Praxis-Unico Business Impact Achieved Award, the 2013 Scottish Digital Technology Award for International Growth and the 2019 Scottish Knowledge Exchange Champion Awards. Originally trained as an electrical engineer and scientist, David has published over 300 papers in international journals and conferences, including creating and coordinating international multi-party RAI hubs and projects (ORCAHUB winner of the 2018 Guardian University Business Collaboration Award). With many strings to his bow, he is also the founding Director and Professor in the Edinburgh Centre for Robotics, works alongside a range of venture capitalists and supports multi-national government-funded projects to develop RAI businesses from the research. David was appointed CBE in 2016 for services to engineering.

Dr Edward Johns

Director of The Robot Learning Lab
Imperial College London

Edward is Director of the Robot Learning Lab at Imperial College London, where he is also a Lecturer and Royal Academy of Engineering Research Fellow. His research lies at the intersection of robotics, computer vision, and machine learning, and his lab is developing methods for robots to perform object manipulation skills with their arms and hands, in everyday environments. He has a BA and MEng from the University of Cambridge, and a PhD from Imperial College London.

Professor Alan Winfield

Professor of Robot Ethics, UWE Bristol
Visiting Professor, Department of Electronics, University of York

Alan is deeply interested in mobile robots for two reasons: they are complex and potentially useful machines that embody every known design challenge and discipline, robots allow humans to address some deep questions about life, emergence, culture and intelligence in a radically new way, i.e. by building models.
Thus for Alan, robotics is both an engineering and experimental philosophy. Alan is committed to the widest possible dissemination of research and ideas in science, engineering and technology and believes that robots provide us with a wonderful vehicle for public engagement. As a passionate believer that intelligent robots will become ubiquitous in the near future, Alan is committed to starting a dialogue now about the ethical and moral questions that will arise.

Meet our Robot

DK-One

DK-One is the world’s first robotic solution for high throughput, fast turnaround, 100% individualized and portion-controlled mass production.

Designed for high volume applications such as restaurants, cafeterias, and central kitchens, every meal produced by DK-One is individually prepared to each customer’s specific requirements.

Learn more

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