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Black-led French autonomous driving startup picks €3.2M to catch poor drivers

Heex Technologies
Image credits: Heex Technologies

Heex Technologies, a French deeptech startup that provides data management for autonomous vehicles has raised €3.2M in a pre-seed round. The investment was led by Paris-based VC Karista (also invested in Leanspace). Out of the total, €2M comes in as equity, and €1.2M comes as non-dilutive financing. 

Other participating investors include Techstars, Google Black Founders Fund, and Bpifrance, alongside top business angels such as Alexei Chemenda. 

The Paris-based company will use the funds to support product R&D and acquire the first customers. 

Arnaud de La Fortelle, Co-founder and CTO, says, “We strongly believe that to reach reliable levels of autonomy in the ground-breaking fields of AI, robotics, or IoT, companies across industries will increasingly need to transition from accumulating all the data to extract primarily the data that is needed; because at some point development teams don’t necessarily need more data, they need BETTER datasets. This new investment will enable the company to scale its product offering and build integrations with strategic partners.”

Better algorithm for autonomous vehicles

Founded in 2019 by Bruno Mendes Da Silva, Arnaud de La Fortelle, Ph. D, and Etienne Boutan, Heex Technologies provides a data management software solution for R&D teams working on advanced artificial intelligence. 

Bruno Mendes Da Silva, CEO, and co-founder, initially focused on solving the pollution crisis before this idea. Then, however, he realised that mobility has more problems than just pollution.

Through its intuitive web platform, Heex Technologies has developed an event-driven approach to automate the push of relevant data (the Smart Data) to the right teams within their organisation. Further, in order to develop better autonomous vehicles, Heex Technologies assists development teams with a more efficient and faster development process.

The startup also provides web services to improve productivity and workflows by enabling users to quickly request and collect the data they need to find the needle in the haystack by focusing on the 1% most pertinent data.

Currently, the company has clients across America, Europe, and Asia and working on use cases such as autonomous driving, digital twins, predictive maintenance, and computer vision.

Despite being based in France, the company also works with US-based programs such as Plug in Play, Microsoft for Startups, and Nvidia’s Inception program.

As one of the top ten European clean mobility startups, Heex was also among the 30 Black-led European startups selected to receive a share of Google’s $2 million Black Founders Fund.

Bruno Mendes Da Silva, Co-founder and CEO says,” We are looking forward to the upcoming months as we want to scale the company to address data-intensive businesses and enable their adoption of Smart Data. Data now has a bigger footprint than the aviation industry, and it’s just getting started. Additionally, we are committed to fostering sustainability by massively delivering our technology with the world becoming more conscious about being efficient to slow global warming.”

Michael Thomas, Investment Director at Karista, says, “We finally found a brilliant team with a true vision around big data processing. Thanks to a unique trigger technology, their approach to generating Smart Data is a key asset in a deep market in a current structural change where there is an ultimate need for enhanced and smarter datasets. It represents a breakthrough to accelerate the shift from R&D to production for many industries, starting with autonomous systems and targeting Space assets’ optimization. Indeed, autonomous systems are increasingly prevalent in the Space economy, especially in the edge, with a profound need for better data management. So we are glad to support them in this first financing step and look forward to helping them build a strong market leadership”.

The company is based in France but works with US-based programs such as Plug in Play Program, Microsoft for Startups’ autonomous driving program and Nvidia Inception.

Heex was also among the 30 Black-led European startups selected to receive a share of Google’s $2 million Black Founders Fund and was recognized as one of the top 10 European startups in clean mobility.

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