To help fund the development of their next-generation autonomous trucking technology, Volvo Group Venture Capital AB has made an investment in Waabi Innovation Inc., a Canadian startup launched in 2016. This investment exemplifies the companies’ dedication to revolutionizing the logistics industry and speeding up the implementation of innovative transportation technologies.
“The company Waabi is using advanced artificial intelligence technology to test, assess skills, and ultimately teach a virtual driver to maneuver safely and efficiently in a commercial-ready autonomous trucking solution. We are impressed by what they have accomplished and see that Volvo Group can add considerable strategic value to the development of their business. We are currently exploring ways to cooperate,” says Martin Witt, President of Volvo Group Venture Capital.
The trucking industry is responsible for transporting the great majority of the world’s goods and its importance is growing quickly. Keeping up with this expansion has put a heavy burden on every facet of the supply chain. Increasing capacity, enhancing safety, and optimizing efficiency are all priorities for Volvo Group, and they believe that completely autonomous trucker transports are the key to achieving these goals while also providing relief for drivers on long, arduous journeys.
Commercializing autonomous transportation solutions on a large scale will require partnerships and funding. Nils Jaeger, President of Volvo Autonomous Solutions, praised Volvo Group’s decision to invest in Waabi, one of the firms helping to create the new transportation ecosystem.
Waabi is creating cutting-edge AI technologies to address widespread autonomy issues. Waabi Driver, the company’s central autonomous trucking solution, was launched recently. Waabi World, a scalable high-quality simulator, is an added component of this system that provides the Waabi Driver with the huge variety of scenarios it needs to perfect its driving skills and pave the way for mainstream adoption of autonomous trucks.
“Autonomy will one day transform trucking and logistics, but the self-driving industry has not solved this challenge, yet,” said Raquel Urtasun, Founder and CEO of Waabi. “Our AI-first approach is the key to unlocking this reality at scale. Volvo Group’s investment in Waabi marks the next step in our journey, particularly around our shared commitment to safety.”
Established in 1997, Volvo Group Venture Capital finances startups all across the world. The goal is to propel change by encouraging new service and solution development and fostering partnerships between emerging companies and the Volvo Group. Logistics Services, Site Solutions, Electrification, and Climate Tech are the areas where Volvo Group plans to invest in light of the market trends driving the future of transportation and the company’s strategic priorities.
The deal will not significantly affect the Volvo Group’s bottom line or cash flow.