Wednesday, February 28, 2018



Self-driving car startup Aurora raises $90M Series A, with participation from Greylock Partners and Index Ventures 



Autonomous vehicles promise to address one of the most challenging, important and interesting evolutions of our time: the complete transformation of the way people and goods move. I have been thinking about the development and deployment of autonomous driving technology for years now. In 2015, I published a post on the future of autonomous cars, “Driving in the Networked Age”. In that post, I said that in a world where all vehicles are networked and autonomous, every car on the road will benefit from what every other car has learned. Driving will become a networked activity, with tighter feedback loops and a much greater ability to aggregate, analyze, and redistribute knowledge. Driving will thus become safer and highly collaborative, with greater cooperation leading to greater efficiency.

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In the early nineties, the auto industry just wasn’t the place for innovation  and until recently, a lot of the new technology that found its way into the car business was generally incremental. Younger consumers have responded to this reality with a degree of apathy. Owning a car used to be rite of passage and a symbol of freedom. Today, it’s become more of a chore and burden, the drive to work something we dread. My teenage children don’t aspire to own a car the way I did. What was once liberating has become frustrating, thanks to traffic, parking, congestion and cost.
 
The last decade has promised change. Because of luminary companies like Tesla, the auto business has started to buzz again. Electric vehicles have begun to go mainstream, and companies like MobileEye and Nvidia have introduced machine learning technology into vehicles. But, the big change” is still to come. Which is why Index is excited to announce our investment in autonomous driving: Aurora. We believe that Aurora and the technology it is building will bring about renaissance in the transportation industry  a return to the days when cars were the cutting edge, and when getting from A to B was something to be enjoyed. Truly autonomous vehicles will not only energize the auto industry, but reshape where and how we live, the way people and goods move through cities, and what sorts of businesses can be built on and around cars.
Self-driving company Aurora raises Series A in a round co-led by Greylock Partners and Index Ventures, bringing the combined capital invested in the company to $90M. Mike Volpi explains what sets Aurora apart. 
Self-driving company Aurora raises Series A in a round co-led by Greylock Partners and Index Ventures, bringing the combined capital invested in the company to $90M. Mike Volpi explains what sets Aurora apart. 
Self-driving company Aurora raises Series A in a round co-led by Greylock Partners and Index Ventures, bringing the combined capital invested in the company to $90M. Mike Volpi explains what sets Aurora apart. 
As a young engineer, I wanted to build and design cars. I was born in Milan, and grew up with posters of Ferraris, Alfa Romeos and Lamborghinis pinned to the walls of my bedroom. When I graduated with a mechanical engineering degree, I applied for jobs at Ford and General Motors. Ford told me I’d be working on a suspension system; GM said I’d be allowed to design radiators. Somehow, they didn’t seem that exciting to my then impressionable younger self. 
 
In the early nineties, the auto industry just wasn’t the place for innovation  and until recently, a lot of the new technology that found its way into the car business was generally incremental. Younger consumers have responded to this reality with a degree of apathy. Owning a car used to be rite of passage and a symbol of freedom. Today, it’s become more of a chore and burden, the drive to work something we dread. My teenage children don’t aspire to own a car the way I did. What was once liberating has become frustrating, thanks to traffic, parking, congestion and cost.
Self-driving company Aurora raises Series A in a round co-led by Greylock Partners and Index Ventures, bringing the combined capital invested in the company to $90M. Mike Volpi explains what sets Aurora apart. 
As a young engineer, I wanted to build and design cars. I was born in Milan, and grew up with posters of Ferraris, Alfa Romeos and Lamborghinis pinned to the walls of my bedroom. When I graduated with a mechanical engineering degree, I applied for jobs at Ford and General Motors. Ford told me I’d be working on a suspension system; GM said I’d be allowed to design radiators. Somehow, they didn’t seem that exciting to my then impressionable younger self. 
 
In the early nineties, the auto industry just wasn’t the place for innovation  and until recently, a lot of the new technology that found its way into the car business was generally incremental. Younger consumers have responded to this reality with a degree of apathy. Owning a car used to be rite of passage and a symbol of freedom. Today, it’s become more of a chore and burden, the drive to work something we dread. My teenage children don’t aspire to own a car the way I did. What was once liberating has become frustrating, thanks to traffic, parking, congestion and cost.
Self-driving company Aurora raises Series A in a round co-led by Greylock Partners and Index Ventures, bringing the combined capital invested in the company to $90M. Mike Volpi explains what sets Aurora apart. 
As a young engineer, I wanted to build and design cars. I was born in Milan, and grew up with posters of Ferraris, Alfa Romeos and Lamborghinis pinned to the walls of my bedroom. When I graduated with a mechanical engineering degree, I applied for jobs at Ford and General Motors. Ford told me I’d be working on a suspension system; GM said I’d be allowed to design radiators. Somehow, they didn’t seem that exciting to my then impressionable younger self. 
 
In the early nineties, the auto industry just wasn’t the place for innovation  and until recently, a lot of the new technology that found its way into the car business was generally incremental. Younger consumers have responded to this reality with a degree of apathy. Owning a car used to be rite of passage and a symbol of freedom. Today, it’s become more of a chore and burden, the drive to work something we dread. My teenage children don’t aspire to own a car the way I did. What was once liberating has become frustrating, thanks to traffic, parking, congestion and cost.
Self-driving company Aurora raises Series A in a round co-led by Greylock Partners and Index Ventures, bringing the combined capital invested in the company to $90M. Mike Volpi explains what sets Aurora apart. 
As a young engineer, I wanted to build and design cars. I was born in Milan, and grew up with posters of Ferraris, Alfa Romeos and Lamborghinis pinned to the walls of my bedroom. When I graduated with a mechanical engineering degree, I applied for jobs at Ford and General Motors. Ford told me I’d be working on a suspension system; GM said I’d be allowed to design radiators. Somehow, they didn’t seem that exciting to my then impressionable younger self. 
 
In the early nineties, the auto industry just wasn’t the place for innovation  and until recently, a lot of the new technology that found its way into the car business was generally incremental. Younger consumers have responded to this reality with a degree of apathy. Owning a car used to be rite of passage and a symbol of freedom. Today, it’s become more of a chore and burden, the drive to work something we dread. My teenage children don’t aspire to own a car the way I did. What was once liberating has become frustrating, thanks to traffic, parking, congestion and cost.

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