The list is out for 2023 — check out the Top Pittsburgh Startups to Watch in 2023
Pittsburgh is a Midwest city that might be known for its steel, but it’s also becoming known as an innovative tech hub. In fact, Startup Genome ranked Pittsburgh 23rd among the top 100 emerging startup ecosystems in the world.
With recent successes from Duolingo and other big startups like Argo AI and Aurora, the city is a hub for AI and robotics, with many hiring startups in Pittsburgh.
If you’re looking for a tech job with an innovative Midwest startup, be sure to check out these 16 Pittsburgh startups. All of them are revolutionizing their industries and rapidly growing.
Top Startups and Tech Companies in Pittsburgh
Duolingo, the language learning startup, is a top tech company in Pittsburgh. Their mission? Make learning a language free and accessible to all. Duolingo is now valued at $6.5 billion and is the most downloaded education app in the history of the App Store.
2. Argo AI
Argo AI is a self-driving tech startup based in Pittsburgh, Detroit, and Palo Alto, as well as Munich, Germany. Argo was founded by professionals in the robotics space. This growing startup now boasts 1,000 employees and partners with both Ford and Volkswagen for their self-driving tech programs. They have raised over $3 billion in funding and continue to launch strategic partnerships (like this one with Walmart).
Aurora is another self-driving car company in Pittsburgh, founded by professionals with previous experience in engineering, robotics, product development, and machine learning. This tech company just went public in November 2021 via SPAC Reinvent Technology Partners. According to Crunchbase the company raised $1 billion in post-IPO equity.
There are a growing number of security companies founded in the Midwest, and in Pittsburgh, ForAllSecure is an industry leader. This top Pittsburgh startup provides autonomous application security solutions for continuous security. They recently raised over $19 million in Series B funding in October 2021.
5. Gecko Robotics
Infrastructure integrity is nothing without data. That’s the motto of Gecko Robotics out of Pittsburgh, where they are creating the next generation of infrastructure automation tools. With $49 million under its belt, the startup is backed by Y Combinator, Mark Cuban, and Drive Capital, among others.
6. Honeycomb Credit
Honeycomb Credit allows businesses to crowdsource small business loans, so you can support businesses you love. This year, the company raised $1.8 million in seed funding and is continuing to grow.
7. RoadRunner Recycling
RoadRunner is a high-tech waste management startup from Pittsburgh. Their proprietary technology aims to reduce costs and increase recycling rates. They even have programs for food composting. The company has raised over $84 million in funding to date.
A green tech startup in Pittsburgh, CleanRobotics makes recycling affordable for businesses, and profitable for recyclers. Powered by AI and a cloud connected robotic system, CleanRobotics’ TrashBot™ sorts waste more accurately than people and improves diversion with less waste and more recyclables. In August 2021, CleanRobotics raised over $5.5 million in Series A funding.
9. Fifth Season
Even farming is being changed by robotics and AI. Fifth Season is a Pittsburgh startup that uses technology to deliver ultra-fresh greens using an indoor, sustainable vertical farm. Plants from Fifth Season aren’t just fresh all year round. They’re also non-GMO and pesticide free. And because they’re grown using indoor, vertical gardening methods, they use less water, less land, and less energy to produce than other growing methods. They’ve raised $35 million to date.
Petuum is an AI startup based both in Pittsburgh and Sunnyvale, CA. The startup has created a new platform for distributed machine learning on big data. Petuum is on a mission to make AI solutions achievable for more businesses. They work across many industries including industrial manufacturing, utilities, healthcare, financial services, retail, transportation, and logistics. Since its founding in 2016, the company has raised $108 million.
RoadBotics is another Pittsburgh AI startup that allows cities to assess road conditions and make objective, data-driven decisions about their public infrastructure. The company has raised $11.6 million and is globally recognized for their innovative technology.
Located in Pittsburgh’s historic Strip District, healthtech startup Innovu has built a software product that gives employers, vendors, and advisors access to benefits and risk data. In 2020 the company raised over $4.5 million in funding, bringing their total up to $26.7 million.
13. Near Earth Autonomy
Pittsburgh startup Near Earth Autonomy technology empowers autonomous field mapping, building inspection, and driverless flight and landing. They partner with Boeing, Airbus, the U.S. Air Force, and NASA, among others. It was recently announced that Near Earth Autonomy landed a defense partnership for its autonomous aircraft tech.
Astrobotic is a space robotics company in Pittsburgh making space accessible to the world. They specialize in making space missions feasible and more affordable for science, exploration, and commerce. The company has $212 million in funding, and has been awarded prizes from NASA for their lunar power infrastructure.
15. Optimus technologies
Optimus Technologies is another clean energy technology company in Pittsburgh. They are creating the Vector System, an advanced fuel system technology that enables diesel engines to operate on 100% biodiesel. As the climate crisis continues and startups take a leading role in fighting climate change, Optimus is right there, working towards a zero carbon emissions future.
16. Marinus Analytics
Marinus Analytics is focused on deploying machine learning and data mining applications with social impact. Their technology is used to disrupt human trafficking, child abuse, and cyber fraud. Out of 800 global competitors, Marinus Analytics took 3rd place in the global AI IBM XPRIZE Competition, raising $500,000 for victims.
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