Donatos founder invests in startup’s 3-D pizza printer

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COLUMBUS, Ohio — The founder of Donatos Pizza is investing in the development of a 3-D printer that can build pizzas with dough, sauce and cheese.

The Columbus Dispatch reports Columbus startup BeeHex has raised $1 million to fund the development of a commercial prototype of its Chef 3D machine. Donatos Pizza founder Jim Grote is the lead investor.

BeeHex co-founder Anjan Contractor says the company is also developing a conveyor oven and an “order topping robot” as pieces of what the company hopes will be a nearly autonomous solution for customers.

BeeHex launched its Chef 3D system last year. The machines, which are not yet available for purchase, can print a pizza in about one minute.

Grote says the system’s technology is “unmatched in bringing unique opportunities to the food industry.