Pipedream, a tech start-up looking to build underground delivery systems for restaurants and other segments, raised $13 million in growth capital.

Founded in 2021, the company created a fully electric underground robotic system to move food, packages, groceries, and other items in seconds.

Wendy’s announced in May 2023 that it would pilot the Instant Pickup technology at one of its restaurants. In this example, an above-ground portal would be positioned inside the kitchen where workers would drop off food and drinks. The meal would then move underground and come out through another portal located in the parking lot. The idea is to provide another convenient and fast pickup option for customers while also creating efficiency for back-of-house workers.

CEO Garrett McCurrach said in a LinkedIn post that the company has more than 100 preorders for this Instant Pickup system. It will use capital to build these systems as quickly as possible for quick-service, retail, and grocery partners.

Pipedream’s long-term goal is to make hyperlogistics—the ability for consumers to receive goods in under 10 minutes for less than a dollar and send them back just as easily—a reality across the nation by the end of the decade. McCurrach wants to make moving products around a city and buildings “as easy and painless as it is to move water.” Over the past year, Pipedream created a nearly mile-long in-city test network that delivers goods from a retail store to an office building through an underground pipe.

Later this year, Pipedream will select a city to build its first middle-mile delivery network and collaborate with government officials to maximize benefits for all residents. Construction will begin this year, and the network should begin use by next spring.

The fundraising round was led by Starship Ventures and included participation from Cortado Ventures and Myelin Ventures.

Story, Technology