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Toyota AI Ventures Backs Boxbot

June 11, 2018

Boxbot, a startup focused on self-driving delivery vehicles, has raised a $7.5 million round of seed funding.

This new funding round was led by Artiman Ventures, and includes an investment from Toyota AI Ventures, a subsidiary of the Toyota Research Institute that invests in early-stage startups in artificial intelligence, data/cloud, autonomous mobility, and robotics. This is Toyota AI Ventures’ first investment in the self-driving delivery space. Pear Ventures, Afore Capital, Ironfire Ventures and The House Fund also invested in this new round.

Boxbot —co-founded in late 2016 by veteran engineers from Tesla and Uber— is working to address the last-mile problem in logistics, through a combination of robotics and autonomous systems. The Boxbot team has extensive experience working for some of the most prominent companies in the fields of autonomous systems, robotics, and logistics (including Tesla, Uber, Amazon, Getaround and Northrop Grumman, among others).

Data shows that the last-mile is often the single most expensive part of the delivery process. Global consulting firm McKinsey & Company has estimated that autonomous vehicles will make 80% of last-mile deliveries by 2025.

“Over the next few years, self-driving vehicles will transform the last-mile, making it cheaper to make deliveries and easier to receive them,” said Brian Wilcove, a partner at Artiman Ventures. “Boxbot has a unique approach, and deep expertise across the disciplines that will drive that transformation. We’re excited to join them on this journey.”

With this latest investment, Boxbot has raised a total of $9 million in funding. The company previously raised $1.5 million in pre-seed funding from Pear Ventures, Afore Capital, The House Fund, The Graduate Syndicate and a number of angel investors.

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