ROBO Brief: Warehouses of the Future, AI-Enhanced Customer Experiences & Innovative Cancer Medicine

    How AI is being utilized to enhance customer experience, smart warehouses of the future, and how spatial biology is defining the new era in cancer treatment.

    Please enjoy these insights from our research team. 


    THNQ: Using AI to Reimagine Customer Engagement

    Digital transformation and the global pandemic have accelerated companies’ desire to not only have a strong online presence but also to build a better digital experience for their consumers, suppliers and partners. The goal of AI is to help customers have a more personalized and efficient experience. AI improves customer/agent conversations by anticipating customer needs and automating actions when possible.

    Companies like Twilio have emerged as dominant providers of AI-powered communication platforms to enable organizations to expand their omni-channel capabilities and marketing engagement by using smart analytical tools. THNQ index member Twilio, at the most recent Investor Day, was very confident when it said it expects to grow revenues 30%+ over the next 4 years, driven by a strong platform business model that enables the company to provide building blocks that customers can use to engage with their customers.

    Twilio’s ultimate mission is to unify data analytics, customer data silos and marketing tools to help customers engage with the end-user. To fulfill its mission, Twilio has been actively investing in its API platform for the developer community, beginning with its acquisition last year of Segment for $3.2 billion. Twilio’s communication platform allows developers to build real-time customer communications into their software applications through APIs. Over the coming years, Twilio will continue to focus on pushing innovation with AI, as the customers are demanding better customer experience. 


    ROBO: GXO Logistics' Vision for Warehouses of the Future

    Logjams and bottlenecks have been all the rage of late, with booming consumer demand on one hand and supply chain disruptions on the other hand. One clear beneficiary of this situation is logistics automation, which currently accounts for 12% of the ROBO index. The same is true of GXO Logistics, a global leader in the highly fragmented Contract Logistics market that was added to the index at the September rebalance, after breaking free as a spinout from XPO Logistics in July. 

    GXO provides automated supply chain management solutions for multinational and blue chip companies worldwide, like Nestle and Nike, who chose to outsource their logistics to specialists. GXO is building high-profile digital warehouses around the world that leverage cutting-edge logistics and warehousing automation technology for the handling, storage and distribution of goods. This includes intelligent robotics, computer vision, automated sortation and autonomous vehicles. In addition to the direct productivity benefits to supply chain operations, we believe the warehouses of the future can greatly enhance environmental sustainability. We expect GXO to grow revenue at around 10% per year through a combination of share gains, booming e-commerce and omnichannel retail, which account for around 50% of revenue, and acquisitions.


    HTEC: Innovative Cancer Medicine Expands into Clinical Trials

    In the same way words can have different meanings depending on their context, cells in living things can behave differently depending on their spatial position among other cells. Over the last decade, there have been tremendous advances in cancer medicine that target very specific genetic mutations. However, these therapies have only been successful in a small number of patients. This is because more work needs to be done to understand the cells surrounding the tumor cells, where they all live relative to one another, and why some neighboring cells may interfere with the cancer treatment.  

    This type of science is known as spatial biology, and it’s estimated to be a $17 billion market opportunity. Nanostring, a company in the HTEC Index, is the market leader in spatial instruments, which have largely been used in the research and discovery setting thus far.

    More recently, this science is expanding into the clinical setting. Akoya Biosciences, one of the newest additions to HTEC, is very well positioned to take advantage of this trend. Akoya’s instrument is high-throughput, meaning it can run enough samples per day to meet the needs of pharma companies like AstraZeneca as they run large-scale clinical trials. We expect Akoya to gain share over the long term, as more pharma companies seek to increase the efficacy of their meds across more patients who need them.

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