Miso Robotics, Panera Bread Team on Coffee Monitoring System

Decerry Donato

Decerry Donato is dot.LA's Editorial Fellow. Prior to that, she was an editorial intern at the company. Decerry received her bachelor's degree in literary journalism from the University of California, Irvine. She continues to write stories to inform the community about issues or events that take place in the L.A. area. On the weekends, she can be found hiking in the Angeles National forest or sifting through racks at your local thrift store.

Miso Robotics, Panera Bread Team on Coffee Monitoring System
Courtesy of Miso Robotics

Pasadena-based Miso Robotics has partnered with yet another major restaurant chain to deploy its automated food-service technology—this time teaming with Panera Bread to roll out an AI-powered coffee monitoring system that aims to provide customers with freshly brewed coffee throughout the day.


Panera will begin using Miso’s CookRight Coffee system at select Midwest locations later this month, the companies said Tuesday. The technology uses proprietary sensors that can measure coffee temperature, how much coffee has been dispensed and how long since a newly brewed batch was last placed in a coffee urn, making it easier for Panera workers to maintain their coffee stations.

The tablet that Panera employees will use to check coffee metrics. Courtesy of Miso Robotics

Miso began developing CookRight Coffee in September with input from Panera, whose employees had complained that the constant back-and-forth of checking on the restaurant’s coffee dispensers was a time suck. Miso sought to address those concerns by designing a user interface that allows Panera employees to access and view a coffee station’s metrics on a tablet without needing to physically check the urns.

Miso Robotics chief strategy officer Jake Brewer.

Courtesy of Miso Robotics

“We are fortunate that Panera was seeking something to solve this need; at the same time, we were seeking to develop something to solve this for the [restaurant] industry,” Miso chief strategy officer Jake Brewer told dot.LA. “While [Panera employees are] doing their primary tasks—serving the guests and making food—they can always be monitoring the coffee.”

Brewer did not provide the price of the CookRight Coffee system or financial details of Miso’s partnership with Panera.

Last month, the robotics startup partnered with fast-casual chain Chipotle on an AI-enabled tortilla chip-making machine dubbed “Chippy,” which will be trialed at one of Chipotle’s Southern California locations later this year.

It’s also teamed with burger chain White Castle on a burger-flipping robot nicknamed “Flippy,” and is developing an automated soda fountain machine named “Sippy.”

“We’re able to scale products quicker and quicker, because we’re using the same building blocks,” Brewer said. “Coffee was just the next one that was kind of timed with a big customer who was looking for it.”

Miso, which is backed by Santa Monica-based food-tech incubator Wavemaker Labs, is currently in the process of raising a Series E funding round that initially launched with a $40 million target. Brewer said Miso has already secured more than $5 million in funding through the round, which he noted is now projected to raise between $25 million to $30 million in total capital.

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Regard Raises $15M for AI-Powered Software That Help Doctors Diagnose Patients

Decerry Donato

Decerry Donato is dot.LA's Editorial Fellow. Prior to that, she was an editorial intern at the company. Decerry received her bachelor's degree in literary journalism from the University of California, Irvine. She continues to write stories to inform the community about issues or events that take place in the L.A. area. On the weekends, she can be found hiking in the Angeles National forest or sifting through racks at your local thrift store.

Regard Raises $15M for AI-Powered Software That Help Doctors Diagnose Patients
Courtesy of Regard

Culver City-based health care startup Regard, which uses AI-driven software to help physicians accurately diagnose patients, has raised $15.3 million in Series A funding.

Pasadena-based Calibrate Ventures and Colorado-based Foundry Group led the investment in Regard, formerly known as HealthTensor. Other investors that participated in the round include TenOneTen Ventures, Susa Ventures, Brook Byers of Byers Capital and Dropbox CEO Drew Houston. The new funding will be used to grow Regard’s team and customer base, the company said in a press release.

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Decerry Donato

Decerry Donato is dot.LA's Editorial Fellow. Prior to that, she was an editorial intern at the company. Decerry received her bachelor's degree in literary journalism from the University of California, Irvine. She continues to write stories to inform the community about issues or events that take place in the L.A. area. On the weekends, she can be found hiking in the Angeles National forest or sifting through racks at your local thrift store.

This Week in 'Raises': Regard Secures $15M, MaC Venture Capital Raises $203M for Second Fund
Image by Joshua Letona

This week in “Raises”: A local healthcare startup secured funding to help grow the team and deploy its software to more physicians and hospitals, while Black-led, seed-stage venture capital firm surpassed its goal for its second fund.

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Keerthi Vedantam

Keerthi Vedantam is a bioscience reporter at dot.LA. She cut her teeth covering everything from cloud computing to 5G in San Francisco and Seattle. Before she covered tech, Keerthi reported on tribal lands and congressional policy in Washington, D.C. Connect with her on Twitter, Clubhouse (@keerthivedantam) or Signal at 408-470-0776.

Braid Theory's Plan to Foster the Next Generation of Ocean Tech Startups
Photo courtesy of the Port of Los Angeles.

San Pedro-based Braid Theory is one of the growing number of accelerators in the country looking to grow the so-called blue economy, which spans a range of ocean-related industries and is estimated at $2.5 trillion a year.

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