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BOULDER — Paul Copioli is the new CEO of Sphero Inc., a Boulder-based robotics company that also announced this week it would spin off its AI and robotics business aimed at first responders into a new company called Company Six.

Copioli, who joined Sphero after its acquisition of education robot startup littleBits Electronics Inc., takes the reins from Paul Berberian, who will now serve as chairman for both Sphero and Company Six, according to a news release.

Company Six, which has already raised a $3 million seed round from investors including Spider Capital, Foundry Group, Techstars, and GAN Ventures, was originally formed as Sphero’s Public Safety Division.

Former Sphero chief operating officer Jim Booth will be Company Six’s CEO.

“Our team is excited to build critically-needed robotic hardware and advanced software solutions that help first responders and people with dangerous jobs,” Booth said in a prepared statement. “Our mission is to build powerful and affordable technology that we can put in the hands of as many people as possible.”

Company Six, with its nine-person team, will be headquartered in Boulder. When employees return to in-person work following the COVID-19 outbreak, they will operate out of a separate office from Sphero’s team of about 75, a company spokesman told BizWest.

Company Six isn’t the only firm to spin out from Sphero. In 2017, the company split and Misty Robotics Inc. was formed.

Sphero, which rose to prominence as the maker of Star Wars’ BB-8 robotic toys, has since shifted its focus away from entertainment products and toward educational robots for school children.

© 2020 BizWest Media LLC

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