Automotive robot delivery service Starship Technologies has today announced $25m in additional seed funding, as it recruits former Airbnb executive Lex Bayer as its new CEO.

The round includes follow-on investments from a star-studded cast of investors like Airbnb co-founder Nathan Blecharczyk, Skype founding engineer Jaan Tallinn and former chairman and CEO of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Gary Barber.

Bayer is joining Starship fresh off the press from Airbnb, where he led its business development, payments and Airbnb For Business departments. Prior to Airbnb, Bayer founded online paytech firm Spare Change Payments, and served as its CEO until it was acquired by PlaySpan in 2009.

Starship co-founder Janus Friis said that the firm is now at the point where its ready to start scaling up the deployment of its robots. This additional round of funding, combined with Bayers appointment, is expected to accelerate the firms services to market.

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Starships robots have now covered over 100,000 miles across the world in 20 countries and over 100 cities, encountering over 15m people along the way.

The startup is in the process of building out its fleet which is designed to deliver goods locally within 15 to 60 minutes, and hopes to deploy its robots in regional neighbourhoods, as well as corporate and university campuses in the US and Europe in the coming years.

“Todays announcement represents a major milestone,” said Starship co-founder and CTO Ahti Heinla. “With the start of our commercial rollout, additional funding and Lex joining the team, we are ready to take the business to new heights.”

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