AI approach to vehicle autonomy brings $200m to Wayve

A London-based start-up pioneering an AI-led approach to autonomous vehicles has announced $200 million Series B funding backed by global financial and strategic investors.

Ocado vans (Image: Ocado & Wayve)

Wayve’s advanced deep learning and camera-first technology is designed to adapt to new, unstructured, highly complex environments without the need for preprogramming, human-designed rules, or high-definition mapping. The companies AV2.0 technology continuously learns from petabyte-scale driving data provided by Wayve’s partner fleets, including Ocado Group, Asda and DPD.

In a statement, Alex Kendall, Wayve co-founder and CEO, said: “We were the first team to develop the scientific breakthroughs in deep learning to build autonomous driving technology that can easily scale to new markets using a data-learned approach.

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“Today we have all the parts in place to continue what we have pioneered and move AV2.0 forward. We’ve brought together world-class strategic partners in transportation, grocery delivery and computing, along with the best capital sources to scale our core autonomy platform, test products with our commercial fleet partners, and build the infrastructure to scale AV2.0 globally. ”

This latest round brings total equity to over $258 million. Wayve will use the new investment to grow its team, develop a Level 4+ AV prototype for passenger cars and vans, scale its deployments on partner fleets to initiate last-mile delivery trials, and develop the data infrastructure to the core fleet-scale autonomy platform to be enhanced.

Eclipse Ventures led the round with the participation of new investors including D1 Capital Partners, Baillie Gifford, Moore Strategic Ventures and Linse Capital, as well as additional support from Microsoft and Virgin, and early stage investors Compound and Balderton Capital. They join strategic investor Ocado Group and angel investors including Sir Richard Branson.

Seth Winterroth, partner, Eclipse Ventures, said: “As the industry struggles to solve self-driving with traditional robotics, it is becoming increasingly clear that AV2.0 is the way to build scalable driving intelligence that can empower commercial fleet operators. help deploy autonomy faster. Wayve is breaking new ground by building AVs that can adapt to driving in new cities, previously unseen in training.”

“We believe Wayve’s innovative AV2.0 technology has significant advantages over rules-based AV approaches, which can be limited by edge cases and lack of modularity,” added Jeff Lerman of D1 Capital Partners.In addition, we believe Wayve’s fleet partnerships enable high-quality data collection at scale that serves as a competitive advantage.”

Abhishek Maheswari
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