Airbiquity, a Seattle-based technology company specializing in the connected-vehicle and telematics market, has secured a $15 million investment from a trio of major Japan-based companies that are major players in the auto industry.
Carmaker Toyota Motor Corp., auto-parts manufacturer DENSO Corp., and trading and manufacturing conglomerate Toyota Tsusho Corp. made the investment to support Airbiquity’s research and development of connected-vehicle technology and related cloud-based systems, including an automotive-based, over-the-air communication system. The goal of the investment and future collaboration is to enhance technologies that enable remote vehicle-software updates and management, increased vehicle operational efficiencies, and mobility services supported by data and analytics.
A Form D filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, filed March 7, indicates that Airbiquity raised $15 million as part of a larger $25 million offering that required a minimum investment per outside investor of $5 million. A total of three investors purchased securities, according to the SEC filing.
Telematics involves merging telecommunications and information-processing technologies and encompasses a range of commercial products, from GPS and navigation systems to hands-free mobile calling. Connected-vehicle technology allows automobiles to access the internet, enabling the vehicle to share data with other devices both within the vehicle and outside of it.
A key part of the collaboration with the investing companies, Airbiquity officials say, will be an effort to further optimize Airbiquity’s OTAmatic software and data-management system for connected vehicles.
“We are delighted to receive investment from three of the most successful corporations in the automotive industry,” says Kamyar Moinzadeh, president and chief executive officer of Airbiquity, which was founded in 1997. “This is an exciting time for our company, and we look forward to working with our new strategic partners to optimize and leverage OTAmatic for the next generation of connected vehicle.”