Oryx Raises $50 Million to Commercialize Next-Generation Tech for Self-Driving Cars

Oryx Vision announced this week that it has raised $50 million in funding.

The Series B round was led by Third Point Ventures and WRV led the round, joined by Union Tech Ventures and existing investors Bessemer Venture Partners, Maniv Mobility, and Trucks VC.

The round comes 15 months after Oryx raised a Series A round, bringing the Israel-based company’s total funding to $67 million.

Oryx has drawn the attention of Silicon Valley venture capitalists for its next-generation light sensing technology, which “achieves the depth vision performance required for autonomous driving with the simplicity and robustness of a digital camera,” according to the firm. Such technology could prove effective for self-driving cars.

“Oryx is building the first solution that will meet all the key requirements of automotive LiDARS—long range, high resolution, and low price—without a trade off,” explains Rani Wellingstein, Oryx CEO.

Oryx uses silicon-made microscopic antennas to detect light wave frequencies. This enables a low-cost system that’s more sensitive, is resistant to interference from the sun, and produces range and velocity data for every point in its field of view.

“It’s uncommon to discover a company that builds a completely new primary technology and creates a solution with dramatic commercial implications,” noted Robert Schwarz, Managing Partner, Third Point Ventures. “Oryx does both.”

Oryx says it will use the new funds to accelerate its development activities and to intensify commercial engagements with suppliers and technology players.

“We believe building a true solid-state, silicon-based system will be essential for creating automotive-grade high performance LiDAR,” added Lip Bu Tan, Managing Director, WRV. “Oryx’s innovation makes it possible.”

The company expects to ship units for car-mounted testing in the second half of 2018.

“Over the past year, Oryx has validated much of the promise we’ve identified in it when we first invested in the company,” said Adam Fisher, Partner, Bessemer Venture Partners “Oryx is best placed to meet the challenge.”

Oryx was founded in 2009 by David Ben-Bassat.