The First Publicly Listed Humanoid Robot Company, UBTECH, Earning CNY 1.055B in 2023

Technology Author: EqualOcean News, Jiahui Liao Editor: Yiru Qian Apr 01, 2024 04:44 PM (GMT+8)

UBTECH's humanoid robot applications have broken through, with significant growth in two business segments.


On March 28, UBTECH (9880:HK) released its 2023 annual financial report, marking its first report since its listing at the end of December 2023. The report indicates that in 2023, UBTECH achieved a total annual revenue of CNY 1.055 billion, representing a 4.7% year-on-year growth. Adjusted EBITDA showed a loss of CNY 515 million, further narrowing compared to the previous year. Both business segments experienced double-digit growth: Smart logistics contributed CNY 389 million in revenue for the full year, a 47.9% year-on-year increase, while consumer-level robots and other hardware contributed CNY 253 million in revenue, marking a 91.5% year-on-year growth.

During the reporting period, UBTECH's research and development investment reached CNY 490 million, a 14.5% year-on-year increase, accounting for 46.4% of the total operating income for the same period. With an average R&D investment of over 50% in the past four years, the comprehensive technological layout formed by 12 years of R&D investment has become a moat for UBTECH's humanoid robots.

As of December 31, 2023, UBTECH possessed over 2,100 robot and artificial intelligence-related patents, representing a significant increase of 31.25% compared to 2022. Among these, over 1,200 are invention patents, accounting for 57%, and over 400 are international patents, representing nearly 20%. According to the "Humanoid Robot Technology Patent Analysis Report" released by the People's Daily Online Research Institute in 2023, UBTECH ranks first globally in the number of effective patents for humanoid robots.

In 2023, UBTECH's commercialization of humanoid robots made significant progress, pioneering the application of humanoid robots in industrial scenarios. They developed the industrial humanoid robot "Walker S" and collaborated with outstanding industry partners to promote the practical application of humanoid robots in the automotive manufacturing sector, jointly creating pilot demonstration stations to facilitate the large-scale application of humanoid robots in industrial scenarios.

Currently, humanoid robots have entered the stage of industrial implementation, and intelligent manufacturing, especially in automotive manufacturing, is likely to become their first large-scale application area. The industrial humanoid robot "Walker S" has already entered NIO's second advanced manufacturing base's final assembly workshop for on-site "training", achieving the world's first instance of a humanoid robot cooperating with humans to complete car assembly and quality inspection tasks on an automotive factory assembly line. "Walker S" is equipped with 41 high-performance servo joints and a comprehensive perception system including multi-dimensional force perception, multi-view stereoscopic vision, omnidirectional hearing, and inertia and ranging, significantly enhancing the robot's autonomous movement and decision-making capabilities, enabling precise, safe, and synchronized operations on the factory assembly line.

Furthermore, consumer-level robots have received global acclaim. The first generation of cat litter robots has garnered unanimous praise from users worldwide, while the second generation of cat litter robots and the Cyclone Strong Suction Floor Sweeping Robot have entered mass production, with the latter becoming a popular product on Kickstarter crowdfunding.

In the field of intelligent logistics, in 2023, UBTECH achieved a breakthrough from 0 to 1 with its low-speed unmanned logistics vehicle products, unveiling the L4-level unmanned logistics vehicle "Chitu," which underwent trial operation in a well-known new energy vehicle company's industrial park. By replacing traditional forklifts and tractors, the L4-level unmanned logistics vehicle "Chitu" achieved unmanned material distribution within the enclosed industrial park.

A significant technological upgrade has been implemented in the artificial intelligence education sector, leading to the development of a new generation educational platform. This platform incorporates the application of large-scale AI models, further strengthening AI capabilities. From perception and experience to exploration, it comprehensively provides high-quality AI learning resources to elementary and middle school teachers and students. It has evolved into a comprehensive intelligent education platform integrating functions such as teaching, programming, practical training, assessment, and management.

Additionally, a versatile and easily adaptable quasi-tactile building block robot, UGOT, enriched with abundant AI attributes, has been successfully launched and accompanied by AI-related educational courses, receiving widespread market recognition.

In the field of smart elderly care, UBTECH has collaborated with Japan's leading brand in dementia care, MCS, to empower the elderly care industry with AI and robotic technology. Together, they aim to create world-class elderly care service robots and solutions, dedicated to enhancing the intelligence level of elderly care institutions, communities, and home care applications globally.

With humanoid robots and artificial intelligence as its core strategic focus, UBTECH is committed to promoting the integration of humanoid robots into various industries and households. The company will concentrate on three major areas: humanoid robots, multimodal perception and large-scale model technology, and embodied intelligence, to support the industry in achieving high-quality development and accelerating the formation of new productive forces. UBTECH has expressed its commitment to continue focusing on humanoid robots and artificial intelligence as its core strategic focus, aiming to popularize humanoid robots in households. In the future, they hope to achieve breakthroughs in embodied intelligence technology.

According to UBTECH's prospectus, as of June 30, 2023, the company has served over 50 countries and regions globally, with more than 900 corporate clients and sales of over 760,000 robots. The global sales of humanoid robots have surpassed 10 units, indicating that the market for humanoid robots is still in its early stage of technological exploration and development. Furthermore, among UBTECH's 1800 full-stack technology patents related to robots and artificial intelligence, over 380 are international patents. As a global company, UBTECH will further optimize its international layout, expand into international markets, and better meet the needs of global customers.

As of the time of writing, UBTECH's Hong Kong stock is priced at HKD 226.2 per share, with a total market value of HKD 94.584 billion.