New investment will serve to accelerate market adoption of Algolux's robust and scalable computer vision and image optimization solutions
MONTREAL, July 12, 2021 /PRNewswire/ - Algolux, a globally recognized computer vision software company, today announced it has raised $18.4 million in Series B funding. This round was co-led by Forte Ventures and Drive Capital with additional funding from new investors Investissement Quebec, Castor Ventures, and Nikon-SBI Innovation Fund, as well as existing investors GM Ventures, Generation Ventures, and Intact Ventures.
Global automotive camera shipments are expected to surpass 300 million units by 2025, reaching $25B in revenue according to separate studies by Yole Developpement and Global Market Insights. Industry growth will continue to be fueled by increasing concerns regarding vehicle and passenger safety across the globe coupled with accelerating technological advancements in camera-based advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS). In parallel, trucks are making great progress towards autonomy as their large size provides a better platform for computing and an improved field of view for sensors. Unfortunately, vision – the most widely deployed component of the overall perception stack - is still hampered by performance issues in low light and poor weather conditions making SAE Levels 2 and above more challenging to support. In fact, urban car crash fatalities and fatality rates have been rising for over a decade in the United States.
Algolux's computer vision and image optimization solutions address the mission-critical issue of safety for ADAS and autonomous vehicles. Algolux is the first company to use computational imaging to design algorithms that treat the camera as part of the overall perception stack; a bold departure from the traditional siloed approach. This leads to the resolution of harsh cases such as low-light, low contrast, and obstructions for object detection, imaging, and geometric estimation. In addition, using physical camera models reduces training data needs by an order of magnitude. This results in Algolux technologies outperforming commercial solutions by as much as 60 points in mean average precision (mAP).
"We are thrilled to be taking this next step in the company's trajectory and to do so with the trust and support of outstanding investors. Algolux is actively engaged with leading OEMs, Tier 1s, and Tier 2s globally. The consistent theme is a desire from customers to significantly improve the performance of their driving and parking vision systems in even the most challenging real-world situations," said Allan Benchetrit, Algolux CEO.
"We fully expect that computer vision systems will be an increasingly important part of the future safety and functionality of vehicles, and a necessary complement to other sensors like LiDAR and Radar," said Louis Rajczi, Partner at Forte Ventures. "We understand that these camera systems must function in extremely challenging environments (low light, poor weather, glare…) and believe Algolux has developed a world-class solution that provides exceptional performance in these types of conditions."
"We are proud to work with Algolux and to support its growth and innovation plans. Our participation demonstrates our desire to back Québec businesses in strategic industries that are ready to drive economic development. We are confident that Algolux, which already stands out as a leading AI provider in the advanced vehicle market, will succeed and make its mark, both here at home and around the globe," said Guy Leblanc, President and CEO of Investissement Quebec.
Recently named to the 2021 CB Insights AI 100 List of the world's most innovative artificial intelligence startups, Algolux will use this funding to achieve the following three goals:
Accelerate adoption of Algolux's award-winning products across mobility markets
Grow its engineering and customer enabling teams to scale worldwide support
Expand to additional vertical markets enabled by camera applications
As part of the funding round, Louis Rajczi, Partner at Forte Ventures, and Alistair Mitchell, President at Generation Ventures have joined the Algolux Board of Directors. Alan MacIntosh, Board Partner at Real Ventures, will be moving to a Board Observer role.
Algolux is also announcing the appointment of Matthias Schulze as Vice President Europe and Asia. Schulze, an ADAS veteran with over 20 years of management experience, will help accelerate Algolux's go-to-market strategy. Most recently, he served as VP, Technology Management at Visteon. Prior to that, he spent over 29 years at Daimler AG in leadership positions related to autonomous driving, ADAS, and telematics. Mr. Schulze's long record of collaboration with the European Commission, the German Federal Ministries of Economics and Technology and of Education and Research, as well as the Ministry of Land Infrastructure and Transport in Japan makes him the ideal fit to help Algolux expand its footprint in Europe and Asia.
Algolux is a globally recognized computer vision company delivering the industry's most robust and scalable perception for all conditions, addressing both existing cameras and new designs through cloud-based tools and embedded AI software.
Named to the 2021 CB Insights AI 100 List of the world's most innovative artificial intelligence startups, the company was founded on groundbreaking research at the intersection of deep learning, computer vision, and computational imaging. Our computer vision and image optimization solutions address the mission-critical issue of safety for automotive ADAS, autonomous vehicles, fleets, autonomous mobile robots, and smart city traffic video analytics.
Algolux is headquartered in Montreal, with offices in Palo Alto and Munich.
Learn more at algolux.com
About Forte Ventures
Forte Ventures is a multi-stage venture capital firm that collaborates and co-invests with corporate strategic partners in technology companies across diversified industry sectors throughout the U.S. and Canada. Focus areas include Information Technology, Insurance Tech, Financial Tech, On-Demand Tech/Services, Mobility, IoT, Cybersecurity, and Industrial Technology. Initial investments generally range between $2-5 million and typically include participation from leading corporate strategic partners as co-investors. Forte Ventures has offices in Atlanta and Silicon Valley. For more information please visit www.forteventures.com.
About Drive Capital
Drive Capital is a Columbus-based venture capital firm that is focused on investing in the world's next generation of market-defining companies. The firm started in 2013 and raised more than $1B of funds to invest in startups solving important problems in large markets. Drive is an investor in more than 40 companies outside of Silicon Valley, including Root Insurance, Duolingo, Cyclica, ApplyBoard, and KOHO. Visit www.drivecapital.com to learn more.
About Investissement Québec
Investissement Québec's mission is to play an active role in Québec's economic development by spurring business innovation, entrepreneurship and business acquisitions, as well as growth in investment and exports. Operating in all the province's administrative regions, the Corporation supports the creation and growth of businesses of all sizes with investments and customized financial solutions. It also assists businesses by providing consulting services and other support measures, including technological assistance available from Investissement Québec – CRIQ. In addition, through Investissement Québec International, the Corporation also prospects for talent and foreign investment and assists Québec businesses with export activities.
About GM Ventures
GM Ventures invests in automotive-related start-ups that are developing advanced technology to be implemented in General Motors' vehicles, manufacturing facilities and operating businesses. We focus on key technologies that support our mission to drive innovation and impact the future of mobility.
About Castor Ventures
Castor Ventures enables MIT alumni to invest together in ventures connected to MIT alums. Castor Ventures raises a fund each year among accredited MIT alums, providing investors with portfolio of 20-30 companies diversified across sector, stage, and geography, co-investing alongside top venture firms. Castor Ventures is part of a family of funds under Alumni Ventures Group, one of the most active venture firms in the world. The fund is private, for-profit, and not affiliated with MIT.
Nikon and SBI Investment Co., Ltd. have jointly established a private fund to invest in venture companies to create new business, promote nurturing of such businesses, and realize business synergies as a mid/long-term plan. Nikon is deploying this new fund not only to existing businesses but also to pursue fresh business opportunities by investing in venture companies that can possibly play a future role, with a focus on Japan and North America as well as European and Asian countries.
About Generation Ventures
Generation Ventures is the venture arm of Generation Capital, a family office based in Toronto, Canada. Through Generation Ventures, they fund leading VCs in Canada, the US, and China, and make a commensurate amount of direct investments. Generation Ventures is managed by a multidisciplinary team that supports their active investment posture.
About Intact Ventures
Founded in 2016, Intact Ventures is the venture arm of Intact Financial Corporation and is focused on investing in companies redefining the insurance industry through innovative business models and new technology. Intact Ventures invests in Series A and Series B companies with early-stage financing.
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