Software for robotic lawnmower wins Swedish circular technology challenge

Husqvarna’s Automower 440 model.

Machine learning software to be used in a robotic lawn mower is the winner of a sustainability innovation competition run by Swedish manufacturer Husqvarna Group. Ekkono Solutions, a Swedish software startup, won the opportunity to develop Husqvarna’s Automower® robotic lawn mowers using its Edge Machine Learning software.

The Sustainovate Open competition was announced earlier in the year, and is open to Swedish startups with ideas contributing to the circular economy. The prize was awarded to Ekkono Solutions with a pilot budget of 300,000 SEK to develop their proof of concept. Together with Husqvarna Group they will scale the smart solution and explore opportunities to embed it into the company’s range of robotic lawn mowers.

“We’re extremely excited about winning Sustainovate Open,” said Linn Sidahl, Head of Business Development at Ekkono Solutions. “As a startup, it is invaluable that a leading product company like Husqvarna Group chooses our technology. Since sustainability is in our company DNA, we strongly believe that Ekkono’s solution will transform the Automower® robotic lawn mower to a more sustainable and circular product.”

Sustainovate Open in partnership with tech and innovation hub THINGS offers “a unique and effective space to learn, collaborate and cooperate with others, which enables circular solutions to emerge”, says the firm. Anna-Karin Lindblom, Director of Accelerated Innovation at Husqvarna Group said, “Sustainovate Open received many brilliant ideas and visions covering our entire value chain. What set Ekkono Solutions apart was how they surpassed the jury’s criteria with their deep understanding of how to use smarter and more connected products to create value for the planet and our customers.”

Husqvarna Group says it has high ambitions to integrate circular solutions into its business. The Sustainovate Circular target aims to launch 50 circular innovations by 2025. AI, machine learning, and data-driven services drive many of these circular services, such as sharing, renting, and maintenance for their products.