Five to tackle AV challenges with US$41m in funding

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Self-driving car company Five has raised US$41m in a Series B round of equity funding with new investors Trustbridge Partners, Direct Line Group and Sistema VC. Existing investors Lakestar, Amadeus Capital Partners, Kindred Capital and Notion Capital also participated. To date US$77m has been raised in funding.

Five’s work in building a self-driving system has led to a profound understanding of how to develop and assure safety-critical software that can interact with complex and changing objects, behaviors and environments in the real world. Five’s team began building cloud-based platforms alongside its software to address the most complex challenges it came across.

The latest round of funding will be used to productize these vital offline cloud-based development platforms alongside high-value components of Five’s online vehicle software. Together these will provide global partners with the means to bring the required performance and engineering certainty to their self-driving programs and deliver the assurance evidence required for their safety cases. Both will be essential for meaningful public road deployments and the widespread commercialization of self-driving technology.

David Lin of Trustbridge Partners, said, “We invest in category-leading companies that are delivering transformational change wherever they’re located. As Europe’s leading self-driving startup, Five is the furthest ahead in developing a clear understanding of the scientific challenges and novel solutions that move the needle for the whole industry. Five has successfully applied Europe’s outstanding science and engineering base to create a world-class team with the energy and ambition to deliver safe self-driving. We are delighted to join them for this next phase of growth.”

Joining Five’s board is Gus Park, MD of motor insurance at Direct Line Group, who commented, “Autonomous and assisted driving technology is going to play a huge role in the future of cars. We have worked closely with Five on the StreetWise project, and we share a common interest in solving the formidable challenges that will need to be addressed in bringing safe self-driving to market. Insurers will need to build the capability to measure and underwrite new types of risk. We will be collaborating with Five’s world-class team of scientists, mathematicians and engineers to gain the insight needed to build safe, insurable solutions and bring the motoring revolution ever closer.”

Stan Boland, Five’s CEO, said, “This funding round is validation of the work we are doing and the role our technology is set to contribute to developing and assuring self-driving. We’re excited to be able to accelerate development and engagements with partners. Our shareholders have large and complementary contributions to make to that progress, and we are delighted to welcome Trustbridge, Direct Line Group and Sistema VC to our cap table. We look forward to their support on the next stage of our journey.”

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Rachel's career in journalism began around five years ago when she started working for UKi Media & Events, having recently graduated from Coventry University where she studied the subject. Her favourite aspect of the job is interviewing industry experts, including researchers, scientists, engineers and technicians, and learning more about the groundbreaking technologies and innovations that are shaping the future of the automotive and tire industries.

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