SAN JOSE — Recogni Inc., which develops a vision-oriented artificial intelligence platform for autonomous vehicles, has emerged from stealth mode with $25 million in Series A financing led by GreatPoint Ventures with participation from Toyota AI Ventures, BMW i Ventures, Faurecia (one of the world’s leading automotive technology companies), Fluxunit (VC arm of lighting and photonics company OSRAM), and DNS Capital.
Recogni plans to use the funds to deliver the most capable inferencing system to enable state of the art sensor fusion of visual and depth sensor data while continuing to grow its top-tier engineering team. Recogni is currently in discussions with multiple auto manufacturers, to provide them with the full suite of enabling technology from modules to the software.
As the automotive industry transitions to self-driving vehicles, a network of computers is needed to drive these vehicles efficiently on a limited energy budget. While these AI systems are trained offline, they need to process the sensor data in real-time in the vehicle. Today, autonomous vehicles have hit the processing efficiency wall and are unable to transition to Level 3+ autonomy and beyond. Recogni is focused on creating high-performance and low-power AI processing to help make autonomous vehicles a reality.
Founded in 2017 and headquartered in San Jose, Recogni has operations in Munich, Germany and is positioning itself to revolutionize perception processing for Level 2+ autonomous vehicles. Using a Vision Cognition Processor, Recogni will solve the endpoint inferencing problem with autonomous vehicles efficiently and change the trajectory of full level 3, 4, and 5 autonomy. The company’s founders possess deep industry experience in system design, AI, vision, and custom silicon design.
“We see a huge opportunity here to truly achieve the goal of full vehicle autonomy with the Recogni platform,” said Ashok Krishnamurthi, Managing Partner at GreatPoint Ventures. “While scoping the market, we realized that most of the neural network accelerator technologies are either optimized for performance or power – none are optimized for both. We believe that the Recogni platform is orders of magnitude superior to anything we have seen. Further, this is a team we’ve known for years and have backed in the past. They are the right group to not only develop this promising technology but also get it into the hands of the auto OEMs.”
“Autonomous systems are becoming smarter, driven by more powerful edge processing. The next opportunity is to achieve this higher machine intelligence at much lower power,” said Jim Adler, Founding Managing Director of Toyota AI Ventures. “We are excited by Recogni’s inference architecture for high-performance, low-power AI computing at the edge, and look forward to working with the team to build a world of safe and efficient autonomous systems.”
“The ability to process sensor data on the edge efficiently and in real-time is essential in the development of autonomous vehicles,” said Marcus Behrendt, Partner at BMW i Ventures. “We believe that Recogni has the right approach and an experienced team to help solve these critical issues as the automotive industry continues on its path towards semi-autonomous and fully autonomous vehicles”