Blackmore Sensors and Analytics, Inc., a developer of frequency-modulated continuous wave (FMCW) lidar for the automotive industry, has raised $18 million in a Series B funding round led by BMW i Ventures. Additional investment comes from Toyota AI Ventures, Millennium Technology Value Partners and Next Frontier Capital.
“Advances in new sensor technologies, like lidar, are going to make cars safer and, eventually, autonomous,” said BMW i Ventures partner Zach Barasz. “Blackmore has unique and innovative FMCW lidar technology that delivers a new dimension of data to future vehicles.”
Low-cost lidar sensors are required to enable self-driving vehicles and, in addition to being more cost-effective, Blackmore’s FMCW lidar technology has several competitive advantages over traditional pulsed lidar systems that enable autonomous driving teams to achieve their goals faster.
“Having the ability to measure both the speed and the distance to any object gives self-driving systems more information to navigate safely,” said Dr. Randy Reibel, Blackmore’s CEO.
Blackmore will use the investment to scale the production of its FMCW lidar sensor for advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and self-driving markets. Increased production capacity will allow Blackmore to support the growing sector of autonomous driving teams demanding a superior lidar solution.
Through its previous investments in the fields of e-mobility, navigation, parking, car sharing and intermodality, BMW i Ventures has already entered into strategic partnerships with innovative providers such as Scoop, Zirx, RiceCell, Chargepoint, Life360, Moovit, JustPark, DSP Concepts, Chargemaster, Zendrive, Rever Moto, STRIVR, Desktop Metal, BUS.com, Proterra, Xometry, Caroobi, GaN Systems, Shift and May Mobility.