Strategic map investment for BMW i Ventures

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BMW i Ventures is investing in Mapillary, a platform for street-level imagery from which map data can be extracted using computer vision. The investment will be ploughed into growing Mapillary’s team, core technology and infrastructure.

Mapillary’s operations have grown to serve more than 22 billion map objects in 190 countries to an increasing number of organisations and customers in mapping, cities and automotive.

“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,” said Uwe Higgen, managing partner at BMW i Ventures. “Data sharing is crucial to maintaining accurate maps and to the development of safe AVs. Mapillary has made great progress and built technology that will let everyone update maps in a scalable way.”

Mapillary’s street-level imagery dataset contains 260 million images, shared and used by individuals, companies, cities, governments and NGOs across the globe. Anyone can contribute images captured with any camera. The platform uses computer vision to connect the images and automatically extract map data, making this sensor-agnostic approach a scalable way to generate the data that powers and updates HD maps.

“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,” said Jan Erik Solem, CEO and co-founder of Mapillary. “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 realise Mapillary’s global potential.”

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As editor of four magazines at UKi Media & Events James brings over a decade of writing about, and obsessing over, technology and cars to Automotive Interiors World, Stadia, Winter Sports Technology International and Auditoria. Responsible for commissioning, writing and editing each issue he’s covered the best (and worst) from around the industry on a continual search to feature the latest innovation or talking point on the next cover.

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