Radar – Our selection of innovative businesses #44

95 million for Vay, the (almost) autonomous mobility startup. Petra raises $30 million to develop its innovative semi-autonomous tunneling solution. Following a €3.2 million round of funding at the end of November, proptech Algar is developing its solution to assist with planning permission procedures.

$95 million for Vay, the almost autonomous mobility startup

German startup Vay has just raised $95 million in Series B funding to roll out its remote-controlled vehicles in Hamburg in 2022. It doesn’t amount to a fleet of fully autonomous vehicles yet, but offers a driverless mobility service.

Vay’s cars are controlled by remote human drivers, also known as teledriving. Vay’s remote drivers use augmented skills, such as 360-degree vision cameras installed on the vehicle. This first stage of remote driving collects data, which will be used eventually to launch fully autonomous driving models.

Kinnevik, Coatue and Eurazeo participated in the round, alongside existing investors Atomico, La Famiglia and Creandum, Project A, Visionaries Club and Signals Venture Capital.

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Petra raises $30 million to develop its innovative semi-autonomous tunneling solution

American startup Petra has raised $30 million series A led by DCVC, with additional participation from ACME Capital Congruent Ventures, 8VC, Real Ventures, Elementum Ventures and Mac Venture Capital. Ian Wright, one of Tesla’s co-founders, was brought in as tech chief.

Petra introduced Swifty, a semi-autonomous boring robot that can drill a 6-metre tunnel through Sioux quartzite, one of the densest types of rock, at an average speed of 2.5 cm per minute.

Swifty uses machine vision and digs microtunnels through hard rock using thermal drilling, which bores through rock without touching it. While conventional micro-drilling machines are designed for a single diameter, Swifty is the first robot to focus on small-bore tunnels of between 50 and 150 centimetres, which significantly reduces tunnelling costs.

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Following the raising of €3.2 million at the end of November, the proptech company Algar is developing its solution to assist with planning permission procedures.

Algar was created to assist individuals in obtaining planning permission. Using an online form, it takes care of compiling the file in accordance with the applicable regulations and sending it to the town hall.

Thanks to a 3.2 million euro fundraising campaign with the EDF group, Algar now aims to diversify its offerings, particularly with professionals: one solution will be aimed more specifically at craftsmen, construction brokers, project managers, property dealers and interior architects, and the other at builders of individual houses.

Algar also plans to create a marketplace, which will enable its customers to find the best products and services to complete their projects (craftsmen, financing, products and materials, etc.).

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And also…

SoPUMP, specialist in concrete pumping digitalisation to triple its workforce in 2022 – Construction Cayola

In Washington DC, Demex Group raises $9 million to deliver a custom-fit model designed for climate resiliency solutions for property owners and managers – Investableuniverse

Canadian proptech Bidmii raises $1 million to develop its home improvement marketplace – Betakit 

This article was published as part of the December 2021 Leonard newsletter: “Reindustrialisation: industrial renaissance ahead? » Find this newsletter in its entirety here and subscribe to receive future ones by following this link.

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