Phantom AIA startup developing advanced driver-assistance systems for cars said today it has closed a $36.5 million funding round.
Intervest led the Series C round and saw participation from existing investors KT Investment and Renaissance Asset Management, as well as new investors Shinhan GB and Samsung Ventures. That brought PhantomAI’s total to $80.2 million.
The startup is developing a comprehensive ADAS platform that includes computer vision, sensor integration, and control capabilities. The idea with its platform is to provide assistance to human drivers and improve safety on the road, rather than powering fully autonomous vehicles. Phantom AI states that while many of its competitors focus on building so-called “robotaxis” that do not require human drivers, it aims to democratize the use of ADAS technology first and foremost, in order to save lives on the road, similarly to implement seatbelts in The nineties.
Phantom AI was founded a few years ago, in 2017 when Korean-born engineers Hyunggi Cho and Chan Kyu Lee met while working at Tesla Inc. They realized that they shared a common interest in unlocking the potential of ADAS technology. They’ve spent the intervening years developing the company’s technology, which aims to reduce road accidents and make driving more enjoyable.
The ADAS startup platform is based on Three main techniques. They include PhantomVision, a scalable, deep learning-powered computer vision platform that supports vehicle, pedestrian, cyclist, clear space, traffic signs, and traffic light detection. Meanwhile, PhantomFusion is a platform-independent sensor fusion and object tracking system that incorporates cameras, radar, lidar, and ultrasonic sensors to enable vehicles to identify their surroundings. Finally, PhantomDrive is a complete ADAS control system that powers adaptive cruise control, automatic lane-keeping and automatic lane-changing features within vehicles.
Phantom AI believes that the auto industry is unlikely to make the leap to fully autonomous vehicles anytime soon. Instead, she believes adoption of ADAS systems is a more likely progression. Today’s round is evidence that the ADAS market is still growing despite the current economic slowdown, she says, adding that government support will help it and other startups in the space to mitigate the impact of the downturn.
“This is in stark contrast to areas of L4/L5 full automation such as robot hubs, robotic shuttles and autonomous trucks, where investments have curtailed as the automotive community realizes that L4/L5 is not easily commercialized over the next few years,” Zhu, PhantomAI’s chief executive officer, said in a statement. statment.
Phantom AI recognizes that advances in automotive AI need not necessarily focus on the “big solution” of autonomous vehicles, said Holger Müller, vice president and principal analyst at Constellation Research Inc. “It will take some time until we see fully AI-powered vehicles on the road, but every now and then there are many opportunities, and it’s good to see Phantom AI catch up with AI driver-assistance systems,” he said.
Funding from today’s round will be used to accelerate production development of the Phantom AI software with its manufacturing partners. “We are focused on developing and expanding our product offering, strengthening our marketing and sales efforts and accelerating our business growth with the goal of providing customers with the best possible multi-camera vision solution on the market,” added Zhou.
Intervest Partner Jay Jinhwan Jeon said customers are increasingly aware of the key role ADAS systems can play in improving vehicle safety. “We are thrilled to partner with Phantom AI and help bring this important technology to market,” he said.