Nauto Closes on Another $159 Million in Funding From BMW, GM, and Others
【Summary】Autonomous vehicle technology company Nauto, whose artificial intelligence-powered system and data platform is helping improve fleet safety and informing the development of self-driving technology, closed a $159 million Series B financing round, led by a subsidiary of SoftBank Group Corp. and Greylock Partners.
Palo Alto, California — Autonomous vehicle technology company Nauto, whose artificial intelligence-powered system and data platform is helping improve fleet safety and informing the development of self-driving technology, closed a $159 million Series B financing round, led by a subsidiary of SoftBank Group Corp. and Greylock Partners.
Other strategic investors include BMW iVentures, General Motors Ventures, Toyota AI Ventures and the venture unit of global financial services and insurance provider Allianz Group, and Series A investors Playground Global and Draper Nexus.
Nauto is an automotive data platform, powered by artificial intelligence along with an aftermarket dual-camera device, which can equip any vehicle or fleet with sophisticated safety and networking features. The Nauto system also includes a new windshield mounted hardware design, updated deep learning and computer vision algorithms and smart cloud network informed by the accumulation of more than a million miles on urban streets and highways.
Because Nauto learns from other drivers, the road and conditions around vehicles in the Nauto network, fleets equipped with Nauto can automatically capture and upload video of significant events and insights in real time to help fleet managers improve overall driver performance and enhance the safety and efficiency of an entire fleet.
The recent new funding will fuel Nauto's growth and the deployment of its retrofit safety and networking system into more vehicles around the globe, as well as support the expansion of the Nauto data platform in autonomous vehicle research and development across multiple automakers.
As more Nauto units get deployed and Nauto-enabled vehicles accumulate more miles, the Nauto network becomes more precise, gains an even greater understanding of human driving behavior and provides more valuable data and safety features. The resulting insights help improve fleet safety and operations, as well as save lives and reduce liability and expenses.
Over time the Nauto data platform will inform the transition to and co-existence of human-driven and autonomous vehicles.
"SoftBank and Greylock, along with our key strategic partners, are turbo-charging Nauto's ability to make roads safer today and to create an onramp to autonomy for the near future," said Nauto founder and CEO Stefan Heck.
"At a time when traffic fatalities are climbing and distracted driving causes more than half of all crashes, we're tackling that problem by putting Nauto's safety features into more commercial fleet vehicles — from trucks and vans to buses and passenger cars — to warn drivers and coach them on how to stay focused. And, in pursuit of the profoundly transformational impact autonomous vehicle technology can have on business and society, we'll now more rapidly be able to gather the billions more miles of real driving experience and data required to get a precise understanding of how the best drivers behave behind the wheel."
"While building an increasingly intelligent telematics business, Nauto is also generating a highly valuable dataset for autonomous driving, at massive scale," said SoftBank Group Corp. Chairman and CEO Masayoshi Son. "This data will help accelerate the development and adoption of safe, effective self-driving technology. We believe in Nauto's potential to revolutionize the automotive sector and look forward to enabling their success."
"In the future, driving will be a networked activity, with tighter feedback loops and a much greater ability to aggregate, analyze, and share knowledge. By building a network of vehicles and drivers, Nauto is accelerating the transition from a human-driver dominant world to a safer, more efficient autonomous-driving era," said Greylock partner and Nauto board member, Reid Hoffman. "Stefan Heck is a smart, seasoned entrepreneur, and the talented Nauto team is building a valuable automotive data platform that will not only make roads safer now, but also gain valuable insights about how humans operate cars for the future."
Greylock's Hoffman and SoftBank's Shu Nyatta will take board seats at Nauto, joining existing members including Nauto's Stefan Heck, automotive industry veteran Karen C. Francis (Ford, GM) and Bruce Leak of Playground Global.
Originally hailing from New Jersey, Eric is a automotive & technology reporter covering the high-tech industry here in Silicon Valley. He has over 15 years of automotive experience and a bachelors degree in computer science. These skills, combined with technical writing and news reporting, allows him to fully understand and identify new and innovative technologies in the auto industry and beyond. He has worked at Uber on self-driving cars and as a technical writer, helping people to understand and work with technology.
Ford is Testing a New Robotic Charging Station to Assist Drivers of EVs With Disabilities
Ford Raises the Prices of the F-150 Lightning Electric Pickup Due to Rising Raw Material Costs
The BMW 7-Series to Feature HD Live Maps From HERE Technologies for Hands-Free Highway Driving in North America at Speeds up to 80 MPH
AutoX to Use the 'Eyeonic Vision Sensor' from California-based SiLC Technologies for its Robotaxi Fleet in China
LG Develops ‘Invisible’ Speaker Sound Technology That Could Revolutionize In-Vehicle Audio
Researchers at South Korea’s Chung-Ang University Develop a ‘Meta-Reinforcement’ Machine Learning Algorithm for Traffic Lights to Improve Vehicle Throughput
Zeekr’s New 009 Electric Passenger Van is the World’s First EV to Feature CATL’s Advanced ‘Qilin’ Battery With a Range of 510 Miles
Redwood Materials is Building an Electric Vehicle Battery Recycling Facility in South Carolina
- BMW i Ventures Invests in Vendia, a Next-Gen Blockchain Company Helping Businesses to Securely Share Data With Third Parties
- Volkswagen Group of America President and CEO is Appointed to Lead the Automaker's New Electric Off-Road Truck Division ‘Scout’
- Drivers of 2010-2018 Lexus Vehicles Lose Vehicle Connectivity Services Due to The Recent Shutdown of 3G Cellular Networks
- China’s Tesla Rival XPeng Unveils its New ‘S4’ 480kW Electric Vehicle Supercharger That Can Add 125 Miles of Range in Just 5 Minutes
- Tesla’s Battery Supplier Panasonic is Close to Selecting the Site of its New U.S. Battery Plant
- BorgWarner to Supply its Integrated Drive Module to Hyundai for a New EV That Will Enter Production in 2024
- General Motors is Doubling its Super Cruise Hands-Free Driving Network to 400,000 Miles of Roads in North America
- Qualcomm and its Industry Partners Demonstrate C-V2X Technology in Georgia That Ensures School Buses and Fire Trucks Never Get Stuck at Red Lights
- SK Inc. Invests $100 Million in North Carolina-based EV Charging Hardware Developer Atom Power
- Audi Hits EV Startup NIO With a Trademark Lawsuit Over its Vehicle Naming