WayRay, a Zurich, Swizterland-based maker of holographic AR displays for cars, raised 80m in Series C funding. The round was co-led by Porsche, which first joined forces with WayRay for a pilot project at Startup Autobahn, and China Merchants Capital, with participation from Hyundai Motor, Alibaba Group, JVCKENWOOD, and Consortium of Sovereign Wealth Funds (JBIC and partners).
The company intends to use the funds to establish an affiliate with a pilot production line in Germany, diversify its portfolio of applications in different sectors — from AR in transportation to AR smart glass in the smart home business and construction industry and to expand the team.
Founded in 2012 and led by Vitaly Ponomarev, CEO, WayRay provides holographic AR solutions that create an augmented reality experience, where virtual objects are integrated into the world around the car.
The solutions include:
– Navion, an aftermarket holographic AR navigation system;
– the embedded Holographic AR Display, a built-in solution for carmakers;
– the True AR SDK for developers to create AR apps for cars; and
– Element, a gamified car tracker for smarter driving.
WayRay’s technology boasts a small projection system that can be installed in almost any car model. Its wide field of view allows for displaying more virtual objects at a comfortable distance for drivers’ eyes. The technology can be customized for both drivers and passengers, conventional vehicles and self-driving cars, consumers (aftermarket) and businesses (OEMs).
The company, which has raised more than $100M to date and aims to become a unicorn with a $1 billion valuation by the end of 2019, employs more than 250 professionals globally with offices in Switzerland, USA, China, Russia.