Oxbotica, an autonomous vehicle startup founded by Oxford University professors, raises $140M to deploy self-driving commercial vehicles
About two years ago, we wrote about Oxbotica after German automotive industry supplier ZF Friedrichshafen AG invested an undisclosed amount in the UK-based autonomous vehicle software startup to jointly develop driving systems for pod-like shuttles which will be able to transport people and goods. A lot has changed since our last story.
Today, Oxbotica announced it has raised $140 million in Series C funding to speed the deployment of autonomous vehicles (AVs) in areas including heavy industry, ports, and airports. The round includes funding from new investors including Japanese insurer Aioi Nissay Dowa Insurance and the venture capital arm of Japanese oil refiner Eneos.
The round, which brings the company’s total funding raise to $225 million, also includes fresh funding from existing investors including Tencent and the venture capital arm of BP (BP.L), as well as Kiko Ventures, the clean tech investment platform of IP Group and its first institutional investor. Oxbotica said additional investors are also expected to join before the funding round closes in a few months.
The announcement comes two years after Oxbotica raised a $47 million Series B investment to accelerate the commercial deployment of its world-class autonomy software platform across multiple industries and key markets.
Oxbotica was founded in 2014 by Oxford University professors, Paul Newman and Ingmar Posner. Since then, the company has grown from a UK robotics start-up to one of the world’s leading autonomy companies. Oxbotica powers the navigation, perception, user interface, fleet management, and other features needed to run self-driving vehicles.
Using computer vision and machine learning, Oxbotica systems learn from their environment and share experiences with each other, so that they’re getting smarter all the time. The system uses a complement of sensors and algorithms to identify and track pedestrians, cars, and other obstacles in the environment.
Meanwhile, Both Oxbotica and ZF have been working together on projects since 2019. The funding in Oxbotica is one of the series of ZF investments in autonomous startups. In May, ZF and Intel Corp’s Mobileye unit said they will jointly develop advanced safety systems – including automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, and lane-keeping systems – for Toyota.