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Innovation & Startups

Re2 doubles in size to 42, hiring 16 more; Pipitone adds six

Two Pittsburgh companies are upsizing: Robotics company Re2 is expanding its Lawrenceville operation and has doubled in size since 2009; Pipitone Group on the North Side has added six marketing professionals bringing its staff to 30-plus.

A leading maker of mobile, modular manipulations systems for the defense industry, Re2's business got a boost from a deal to provide its Small Robot Toolkit to Northrop Grumman Corp. subsidiary Romtec Inc., technology that assists in dismantling improvised explosive devices (IEDs). 

DARPA has also selected Re2 to develop a dual-arm robot and software simulation tool for its Autonomous Robotic Manipulation (ARM) program's Outreach Track, a program through which DARPA shares research information with other scientists.

Ongoing projects such as these are driving company growth, reports Jorgen Pedersen, president and CEO.  Re2 doubled in size to 40 employees in the last year and plans to hire an additional 16 people by March, engineers for both entry level and senior positions. Re2 has also expanded its space to 17,000 square feet and has added a 10,000 square-foot parking facility in Lawrenceville.

"We've been focused on mobile intelligence manipulation almost exclusively for the past half decade and no company is focused on just that," says Pedersen. "It's a very hot topic in the military now. We're definitely a leader in this area."

After a year of belt-tightening in 2009, Pipitone Group has added six new employees to its team of 30-plus, says Scott Pipitone. Retaining customers, winning new ones and capitalizing on new business is driving the firm forward.

"We've had a good stable of customers who are in it for the long term," says Pipitone. "Our niche is around smaller channel marketing companies. We're not going off and hunting for the big elephant; we have some nice-sized deer and antelope in our sights."

Pipitone has room to grow on the North Side with 12,000 square-feet of space, he adds.

Writer: Debra Diamond Smit
Source: Jorgen Pedersen, Doug Peters, Re2; Scott Pipitone

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