UK-based Wejo has secured up to $100M (€88M) in committed equity financing. The company, which builds an EV infrastructure data platform, announced on Monday that it has entered into a common stock purchase agreement and a registration rights agreement with CF Principal Investments LLC, an affiliate of Cantor Fitzgerald.
A committed equity financing to make critical investments
“We are excited to partner with Cantor Fitzgerald and secure this financing facility,” says Richard Barlow, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Wejo. The auto data startup based in Manchester intends to use the additional funding to make critical investments and also focus on its expansion.
Wejo went public in May last year through a reverse merger with black-check company Virtuoso Acquisition Corp in a deal valuing the startup at around $800M. The deal saw Wejo raise $330M, including $230M from SPAC Virtuoso and another $100M referred to as Private Investment in Public Equity (PIPE).
Now, the startup is raising again using an instrument called committed equity financing facility where the company has the option to sell up to $100M of its common stock to CFPI over a 36-months period. Wejo Group Limited does not have the obligation to sell its common stock and it intends to “use the proceeds from any future sales of securities under the financing facility, if it is utilised, for general corporate purposes”.
“This additional funding gives Wejo the financial flexibility to continue to make key investments that will support our business, which include expanding OEM relationships, deployment of new products and services, including Wejo Neural Edge, and continuing our geographic expansion. Equally as important, completion of this facility demonstrates confidence in the value that Wejo brings to the marketplace as a leader in supporting smart mobility,” adds Richard Barlow.
Wejo will soon announce its financial results for the fourth quarter and full-year 2021, and is expected to share additional updates around its business performance. The Nasdaq-listed Wejo won’t be able to issue more than 18,780,646 (or 19.99 per cent) shares of its common stock to CFPI as per the stock market rules.
Wejo: what you need to know
Wejo is an auto startup that organises data from almost 11 million vehicles connected to the internet using embedded modems. It works with automakers such as GM, Hyundai Motor Co and Daimler. The data generated and organised by Wejo can be used by automakers to develop apps and services for fleets.
The data can also be used to build apps and services for smart cities and individual consumers. Wejo also offers its services to companies in the field of advertising, fleet management, insurance, remote diagnostics, roadside assistance, parking availability and traffic information.
Founded in 2014, Wejo stands for “we journey” and has raised capital from the likes of GM, Palantir Technologies Inc, German auto supplier Hella, DIP Capital and the British government. The startup estimates the connected vehicle data market will be worth €440B ($500B) by 2030.
With the autonomous future set to become a reality soon, Wejo sees an opportunity to turn the connected vehicle data into revenue streams and offer more services to automakers and their customers. The transition to an autonomous system will also lead to greater efficiency for companies in product development.
Wejo offers a technology platform called ADEPT that allows automakers to organise the data collected in those vehicles. However, the ace up its sleeve is Wejo Neural Edge platform, a software that aims to address the key pitfalls facing fully self-driving vehicles. Wejo says the Neural Edge will act as a building block for cars to not only communicate with each other but also with other infrastructure such as traffic signs.
The Neural Edge relies on edge computing and uses machine learning to help automakers reconstruct 100 per cent of vehicle journeys with only 20 per cent of the raw insights. The tech also supports digital twin technology to fully recreate the vehicle in digital environments.
Wejo is not alone in this race to build a platform that will make fully autonomous vehicles a reality. However, it is one that seems to have come the furthest when it comes to offering a fully serviced platform. With additional funding, it needs to be seen whether Wejo succeeds in deploying the service on fleets and individual vehicles.