Roadstar.ai, an AI-powered self-driving startup located in Shenzhen, China, recently revealed details about the securing of $128 million in its recently closed Series A financing round. The impressive part about this figure is that it marks the largest investment ever to be made into a Chinese startup, particularly one in the self-driving industry.
According to a statement posted by the company on its website, the latest financing round was co-led by Wu Capital and Shenzhen Capital Group. Other participants included Vision Capital and CMB International Capital as well as previous investors such as Shenzhen Green Pine Capital, Glory Ventures, Yungi Partners and Ventech.
The financing amount raised by Roadstar.ai surpassed that of Pony.ai, another autonomous driving car startup, which secured $112M in its Series A round of funding. The exercise was led by two venture capital firms including Legend Capital and Morningside Venture Capital.
Roadstar. ai traces its establishment back in 2017 through the partnership of three engineers who had formerly led self-driving technologies. They had worked for some of the leading technology companies in the world such as Baidu USA, Google, Nvidia, Tesla and Apple. The startup intends to use the raised funds not only in expanding its self-driving fleet of vehicles but also in enhancing data collection technology and security.
The Shenzhen-based startup boasts two revolutionary technologies including DeepFusion and HeteroSync. The former is known for producing a safe, efficient and robust self-driving solution while the latter offers real-time update, accurate time, robust data-based features and spatial synchronization.
During the CES trade show held in Las Vegas last January, Roadstar.ai displayed its prototype self-driving car, which is powered by its groundbreaking autonomous driving technologies. Also, the company said on its official website that it focuses on providing efficient self-driving solutions to future advanced transportation system through a robust and unique multi-sensor fusion framework. By doing so, it hopes to promote more enjoyable and safer travel experiences.
Aside from Roadstar. ai and Pony.ai, other startups such as JingChi are planning to undertake their first Series A financing round. Created on April 2017, this startup managed to complete its self-driving tests in a closed location in less than five weeks, which is not a minor feat. What’s more, JingChi became the 34th company to receive a license for testing self-driving cars last year in June. As a testament to its dedication to succeed in the industry, the company went ahead to carry out and complete its initial self-driving mode testing on California public roads.
Last month, in a move to expedite its efforts to keep up with the United States and become the world leader in self-driving technology, China unveiled national guidelines to be followed in testing autonomous cars. The Ministry of Communication, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, and Ministry of Public Security among others emphasized that the testing of autonomous vehicles ought to be first carried out in non-public areas. They also said that a driver should be seated in the driver’s seat during the tests to take over the controls when the need arises.