Since his childhood summers mowing lawns with his grandfather, George Leno Holmes, Jr. PhD has been dreaming of a better way to mow grass. After laboring all day in the hot sun and suffering from allergies, he knew there had to be an easier way to get the job done.
George pursued an education in mechanical engineering and a PhD in robotics. Fascinated by automotive technology, he worked for Rockwell Automation and the National Science Foundation before deciding to give his dream a go.
He designed Henry – a robotic lawn mower that cuts gas emissions in half and is four times more productive than a hired crew. Henry, a 60-inch, lightweight lawnmower, is intended to cut grass in industrial green spaces, like those at airports, parks, or other municipal areas.
To utilize Henry, the only labor required is taking the mower to and from the designated location and turning it on. It fits easily in the back of a pickup truck. To inform the machine where to mow, the employee simply drags a finger across an aerial map in the user-friendly software. Henry utilizes GPS, artificial intelligence, and 5G technology to stream data to pinpoint where to work. Henry can operate for 10 hours at a time without needing to be charged, it doesn’t require breaks, and it can work at any hour of the day.
“It’s hard for our customers to find employees these days who want to mow lawns for 8-10 hours a day. Henry provides a way for our customers to continue operating despite labor shortages,” George explains.
Henry is named after John Henry, a folklore character famous for his speed in laying railroad tracks. Legend says that once a machine was introduced to do the job, John Henry competed against it. In the end, John Henry beat the machine, but he had to work so hard that his heart stopped. Holmes and COO Keiry “Katie” Moreno Bonnett named their device Henry to honor the middle-class worker and to make the statement that working with, not against, machines is the way of the future.
Fourscore helped Hire Henry participate in an accelerator program through RIoT Accelerator Program and guided George and Bonnett through the fundraising process.
“Sean Valle has been phenomenal as we raise our first financing round – he’s been great in advising us on strategy, considering investment offers, and structuring our documents,” says George.
Currently, Hire Henry has a contract in Sugar Land, Texas with a 340-acre regional airport. The team is also piloting with a 10-acre park in Stafford County, Virginia, and an 8-acre park in Cary, North Carolina.
In the future, George hopes to see his robotic lawnmowers deployed in greenspaces around the world.
Hire Henry is a technology startup focused on the development of software for industrial robotic lawn mowers for industrial greenspace applications. To learn more about Hire Henry visit their website at www.hirehenry.us, direct questions to email@example.com