Pony.ai, a developer of autonomous driving technology, has completed its first close of its Series D financing.
The Series D round, which has a significant valuation uplift from the 2020 C and C+ rounds, is a recognition by investors of Pony.ai’s achieved technical milestones and significant progress toward a commercialized robotaxi and robotruck product.
The proceeds from the funding will be used to further augment Pony.ai’s hiring, investment in research and development, global testing of robotaxi and robotrucking on an ever-growing fleet, enter into important strategic partnerships, and accelerate our development toward mass production and mass commercial deployment.
James Peng, co-founder and CEO of Pony.ai, says: “I am very proud to announce this first close of our Series D.
“The success of this financing belongs to the entire Pony.ai team, who have made tremendous strides in achieving and exceeding our 2021 milestones. We are excited about our 2022 objectives and the rapid pace of our development toward autonomous mobility globally.
“Our technical development and balance sheet strength go hand-in-hand in allowing us to significantly expand our hiring in 2022, open up a number of new autonomous vehicle global testing and operation sites, progress our strategic partnerships and rapidly grow our fleet.
“We appreciate the support of our investors in the previous rounds and welcome our new partners to Pony.ai’s global story.”
Tiancheng Lou, Pony.ai co-founder and CTO, says: “A key part of our story for our investors is our tech development path.
“From 2020 to the end of 2021, our key safety metrics increased tremendously, such that in most circumstances Pony.ai’s virtual driver is now equal to or superior to a human driver.
“We’re confident in our autonomous vehicle tech readiness as we rapidly scale toward robotaxi and robotruck commercialization and mass production.”
Lawrence Steyn, CFO of Pony.ai, says: “We’re delighted by the financial progression at Pony.ai and the substantial valuation increase to our 2020 C and C+ rounds.
“This significant uptick in valuation is a reflection by our partners of our delivered results over the last year and our very specific development milestones for 2022.
“Our company has always been well funded, and this round funds development at Pony.ai several years into the future – in fact, we believe, up to the window for our anticipated launch of mass commercialization.”
Additional details of the Series D financing will be announced in due course at the closing of the full financing round.