Last Thursday, April 06, otonomo, a relatively young company that provides a vehicle data exchange platform, announced they’d raised $25 million in their Series B funding round. The round was led by Delphi, a U.K. based automotive technology company and included otonomo’s previous investors, Bessemer Venture Partners, StageOne Ventures and Maniv Mobility.
In the announcement, otonomo CEO and co-founder Ben Volkow stated, “We are excited to work with Delphi to deliver our car data marketplace to OEMs in order to enable a better driving experience. We believe this partnership will help accelerate otonomo’s ability to enable new products and services using data collected from connected cars.”
Delphi president and CEO, Kevin Clark commented in a press release, “The focus of our partnership will be bringing otonomo’s connected car marketplace to OEM customers. otonomo’s connected car marketplace will be integrated with Delphi products to offer a complete data acquisition and monetization solution for automakers.”
Now, before we go any further, I’m sure some of you are wondering what exactly a ‘vehicle data exchange platform’ is… I know I was. Basically, it’s a network for vehicle manufacturers, service providers, and developers to exchange vehicle-generated data with the aim of improving driver safety and the driver experience in general.
Mr. Volkow explains, “There are more and more connected cars out there, and those connected cars are sending a lot of data in the background all the time to big databases the car manufacturers have built. They send the data between every minute to every three or four minutes depending on the model, and also when you start the car, when you park the car or when you have an event.”
All of that data is a major asset for vehicle manufacturers while developing new designs and services, but it comes at a great cost. “It costs a lot of money for the OEs; putting the modem in the car is like $100, then you have to pay AT&T about $5 per month to get the data out, then it’s about $1 to store the data,” Volkow continues. “So we started talking to the car companies and they’re telling us ‘Connectivity, it’s a thing – show us the money.’ That’s what we do: We want to move from the age of data mobilization, to the age of data monetization.”
otonomo will give app developers and companies in the automotive industry much easier access to that all important vehicle data while helping vehicle manufacturers offset their R&D costs. No matter how you look at it, it’s a win/win.
For more on otonomo check out this awesome article by TechCrunch.
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