UK-based self-driving vehicles software company, Oxbotica, has raised $47M (approx €38.2M) in its Series B round of funding led by BP Ventures. Investors in this round also include BGF, Halma, HostPlus, IP Group, Tencent, Venture Science, and funds advised by Doxa Partners. With financial and strategic investors in Australia, China, UK, and the USA, Oxbotica is placed at the centre of a global autonomy ecosystem, claims the company.
How will the funds be used?
Paul Newman, CTO and founder of Oxbotica, says, “We have a vision, we have the technology, we have the team, we see the markets and we have the customers. Adding these high-quality investors to this mix means we can continue to accelerate Oxbotica, and change the way bits (software) move atoms (people and goods).”
The startup says that the raised capital will help it accelerate commercial deployment of its autonomous software platform “across multiple industries and key markets”.
“This round of investment marks a key chapter in Oxbotica’s continued growth and pushes us forward in commercialising our autonomous software today, through key strategic go-to-market partnerships,” says Ozgur Tohumcu, CEO of Oxbotica.
Everything about Oxbotica
Oxbotica was founded in 2014 by Oxford professors, Paul Newman and Ingmar Posner. Since then, the company claims to have grown from a startup to one of the world’s leading autonomous driving software companies. “We build software for real-world application, drawing on principles of physics, robotics, maths, AI and a dedicated team to perfect our technology,” says the company.
The company’s product is a software platform providing Universal Autonomy. It is fast to deploy, low energy, hardware-agnostic autonomy and applicable to a vast array of vehicle types both on and off-road, according to Oxbotica.
The company also builds software for real-world applications based on the principles of maths, physics, robotics, and Artificial Intelligence. The advanced technology supports Oxbotica’s unique horizontal B2B model providing operators, integrators and manufacturers the autonomy functionality and flexibility they need – be that a full stack or on a component-by-component basis.
It provides airport, industrial, shuttle, port, automotive, mining, industrial, and logistics solutions for fleet management down to the individual vehicle.
In June 2020, Wenco International Mining Systems and Oxbotica signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to develop a world-first Open Autonomy solution for mining. Initial trials are underway, and the companies are actively recruiting mining partners with appropriate testing grounds. This will provide customers flexibility and efficiency in autonomous mining deployment, allowing them to operate any open standard-based vehicle and integrate it into their existing fleet.
Prior to that, in August 2020, the company was granted an automated vehicle (AV) permit recommendation by TÜV SÜD to conduct live trials in urban and rural areas in southern Germany. To gain the AV permit recommendation, Oxbotica claims that it had to meet a rigorous assessment framework including detailed hazard analysis and the combination of physical real-world tests and scenario-based simulations.
In September 2019, the company had announced: “Project Endeavour” – a Government-backed R&D project – to run live tests in three major UK cities until September 2021. The trials will demonstrate autonomous driving in a variety of urban and city environments and will develop engagement models with local authorities and communities to help them prepare for the future launch of autonomous vehicle services. The aim is to use a combination of advanced simulations and on-road demonstrations in order to help accelerate and scale the deployment and adoption of autonomous vehicles.