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Silicon Valley’s Applied Intuition grabs $250M at $6B valuation to develop AI-powered self-driving vehicle software

Applied Intuition funding
Picture credits: Applied Intuition

As per reports, the global autonomous car market is estimated to reach $64.88 billion by 2026. Gearing up to contribute to this growth, Tesla, Uber, Lyft, Waymo, and incumbent automakers are under competitive pressure to accelerate the advent of autonomous vehicle technology. At the same time, Apple recently announced that it is cancelling its decade-long effort to build a self-driving electric car. 

While building an effective AI software system can create a critical challenge for manufacturers, US-based Applied Intuition works with the vision to remedy complicated software issues through its new AI-powered approach to revolutionise the vehicle software development process for autonomous driving software and beyond.

Attains $6B valuation

Now, Applied Intuition just raised a $250 million Series E financing round at a $6 billion valuation. The round was led by Bilal Zuberi at Lux Capital, Elad Gil, and strategic investor Porsche Investments Management. It also saw new and existing investors – Andreessen Horowitz (backed ElevanLabs and Hippocratic AI), General Catalyst, Mary Meeker at BOND, Human Capital, Henry Kravis, Mustafa Suleyman, John Quinn, and Nico Rosberg.

The company will use the financing to make significant investments in generative AI to unlock substantial value for customers and partners. With recent advancements in large language models (LLMs), Applied Intuition will help its customers revolutionise the vehicle software development process. The company will continue to recruit the world’s best software and AI engineers to further expand its offerings that enable its customers to have the world’s most advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) and automated driving (AD) solutions.

Transforms development of next-gen vehicles

Applied Intuition was founded in 2017 by Qasar Younis and Peter Ludwig. Younis was born in Pakistan and grew up in Detroit. Younis attended the General Motors Institute of Technology to study mechanical engineering. After attending Harvard Business School, Younis started TalkBin, which was acquired by Google, where Younis met Ludwig for the first time. Before founding Applied Intuition, he served as the COO of Y Combinator. 

Ludwig grew up in a household where most of his family were automotive engineers. He went to the University of Michigan for his undergraduate and master’s degrees. After college, he began his career as an Associate Product Manager at Google. 

Applied Intuition sells software that allows autonomous vehicle companies to simulate and test the software and hardware of their vehicles in as many circumstances as possible. Its platform enables clients to design, test, and validate their autonomous systems in a virtual environment before testing on the road. Its suite of products, focused on simulation and analytics, provides software infrastructure for self-driving testing. 

Headquartered in Silicon Valley, the company has offices in Detroit, Washington, D.C., Germany, Korea, and Japan and has customers worldwide, including top automotive OEMs such as German-based luxury sport car manufacturer Porsche. 

“Applied Intuition benefits from generational megatrends including generative AI, autonomous systems, and software-defined vehicles. It is no wonder the company has built a scalable business and become an indispensable partner to top automotive OEMs and the U.S. military,” said Bilal Zuberi, General Partner at Lux Capital. “Applied Intuition is at the forefront of the AI revolution to transform the global transportation industry, and we are excited by its growth and distinctive position in the market. The best evidence is our enthusiasm to invest in every opportunity in the company’s history.”

“More than ever, consumers expect exclusive and seamless software integration in their cars,” said Lutz Meschke, CFO at Porsche AG. “With this strategic investment and partnership we want to further strengthen Porsche’s expertise in the field of software and customer experience.”

“Within the last few years, we’ve seen massive advances in artificial intelligence that will have groundbreaking impacts on the industries that Applied Intuition serves. Our role as a leader in the ecosystem is to bring the best of what Silicon Valley has to offer to our global customer base,” said Qasar Younis, CEO and Co-Founder of Applied Intuition. “Our industry-leading vehicle software products will infuse AI technology to expand beyond our definitive ADAS and AD toolchain, which will exponentially accelerate the production of next-generation vehicles.”

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