Domino’s Partners With Nuro to Launch Autonomous Pizza Delivery On-Road Robot

By McKenzie Carpenter Monday, April 12, 2021

Today Domino’s Pizza announced a partnership with Nuro to launch autonomous pizza delivery robots that use AI technology.

Domino's Pizza storefront.

About Each Business

Founded in 1960 and headquartered at Domino’s Farms in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Domino’s Pizza has become the world’s largest pizza company based on global retail sales across business-owned and franchise-owned stores around the world. Operating in more than 90 countries, the business claims it sells an average of 3 million pizzas per day. Additionally, the company had more than $16.1 billion in global retail sales in 2020. Google Finance reports Domino’s Pizza has a market cap of $15.15 billion.

Nuro is a California-based startup company that uses AI technology to develop electric vehicles for autonomous delivery. The EV robot created by the startup company, R2, is designed to operate as an on-road vehicle. The R2 AI robot features 360° cameras, short and long-range sensors and radars, and advanced hardware for navigation. Startup Savant reported in December that the business had more than $1 billion in funding. Since then, Nuro raised an additional $500 million in March 2021.

Domino’s Partnership with Nuro

The pizza business announced it will be partnering with the AI EV startup company to launch autonomous pizza delivery robots in Houston.

Dennis Maloney, senior vice president and chief innovation officer for the pizza business, said in a statement, “We’re excited to continue innovating the delivery experience for Domino's customers by testing autonomous delivery with Nuro in Houston...There is still so much for our brand to learn about the autonomous delivery space. This program will allow us to better understand how customers respond to the deliveries, how they interact with the robot and how it affects store operations...we look forward to seeing how autonomous delivery can work along with Domino's existing delivery experts to better support the customers’ needs.”

According to the press release, beginning this week, customers who place a prepaid online order on certain days and times in Woodland Heights — a Houston neighborhood — can choose to have their pizza delivered with the AI EV robot created by the startup company.

Customers who select R2 delivery will receive text updates on the AI EV robot’s location and a unique personal identification number (PIN) that will be used to unlock the robot to receive the order once it arrives at the delivery location.

In addition, the EV robot is the first completely autonomous, occupant-less on-road delivery vehicle that has received regulatory approval from the United States (US) Department of Transportation.

Co-founder and president of the AI EV startup business, Dave Ferguson, added, “Nuro’s mission is to better everyday life through robotics. Now, for the first time, we're launching real world, autonomous deliveries with R2 and Domino's...We’re excited to introduce our autonomous delivery bots to a select set of Domino's customers in Houston. We can't wait to see what they think.”

This new partnership with Domino’s Pizza is another notable addition to Nuro’s portfolio. Nuro is also partnered with Kroger, Walmart, and CVS Pharmacy to provide grocery and prescription deliveries.

About the Author

Headshot of McKenzie Carpenter

McKenzie Carpenter is a graduate of Central Michigan University with a B.A.A. in Integrative Public Relations and French. McKenzie has previously worked for small businesses and nonprofit organizations.

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