BMW i Ventures in April announced a strategic investment in Mapillary, the world’s leading street-level imagery platform. Mapillary’s database consists of more than 260 million street-level images gathered by individuals and organizations, through which computer vision technology extracts map data at scale.
“There is a growing need for an independent provider of street-level imagery and map data, which also acts as a sharing platform among different players,” says Uwe Higgen, Managing Partner of BMW i Ventures. “Data sharing is crucial to maintaining accurate maps and to the development of safe autonomous vehicles. Mapillary has made great progress and built technology that will let everyone update maps in a scalable way.”
Jan Erik Solem, co-founder and CEO of Mapillary, wrote on The Mapillary Blog that his company’s ambition includes building smarter cities and making traffic safer for pedestrians and travelers. BMW i Ventures’ investment will enable Mapillary to grow its team to handle the increasing magnitude of operations and launch new initiatives.
“With everything that’s happening around autonomous driving, we know the need for a collaborative, device-agnostic, and map-agnostic platform will be steadily growing,” Solem writes. “While the application of Mapillary for automotive use might be new, the underlying idea is the same since our first day: sharing data so that everyone wins. Our new investors will help us navigate this rapidly changing automotive market and bring expertise in distributing map data that will help us realize Mapillary’s global potential.”
In July, Mapillary achieved a milestone of 5 million kilometers (3,106,856 miles) of coverage.
BMW i Ventures is BMW’s venture capital fund that focuses on areas including e-mobility, artificial intelligence, customer digital life and autonomous driving. Its current investment portfolio includes Chargepoint, Fair, Nauto, Parkopedia and Zendrive.
This article is presented by Gault Auto Sport BMW in ENDICOTT, New York.