Driverless car future puts Cubic Telecom in fast lane for $40m fundraising

17 Jul 2017

An Audi E-tron Q8 Concept SUV at the North American International Auto Show. Image: Steve Lagreca/Shutterstock

Dublin mobile tech firm close to clinching new investment and creating more jobs.

Cubic Telecom is reportedly set to announce that it has raised $40m (€35m) in a new funding round that values the company at €200m.

The tech firm – which counts Audi and Qualcomm as investors, and Microsoft and Volkswagen as customers – is about to close the $40m round but is also understood to be capturing a further $40m in investment.

According to the Sunday Independent, Cubic Telecom is making a big bet on driverless car technology.

In 2014, the company was believed to have scored a major deal with Tesla to install Cubic Telecom’s technology in all 7,500 Tesla vehicles sold in China.

Revving up for a new tomorrow

Last October, Cubic revealed a new global connectivity platform, using a virtual SIM technology that enables 100Mbps broadband connectivity in all new Audi road cars.

The virtual SIM card allows 100Mbps high-speed internet access on the road, letting drivers and passengers avail of online services. These include Google Street View, traffic and parking information, and a range of infotainment features, such as email, calendar and social media integration.

The expansion created 60 new jobs at the company’s Dublin offices, increasing the workforce from 80 to 140 employees.

In 2015, Cubic Telecom secured an €18m investment from Audi Electronics Venture GmbH and Qualcomm to put 3G and 4G connectivity in Audi vehicles.

In June, it emerged that Cubic Telecom was selected by Audi to power wireless connectivity in all of its new cars, including the A3, A4, the new A5, the Audi Q2 and the Q7.

During his trip to Dublin last year, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella referred to Cubic Telecom as an innovative internet of things company bringing its expertise to the global stage.

Nadella said it was “a fantastic example of an Irish start-up that not only has built something that is significant for Europe, but worldwide”.

An Audi E-tron Q8 Concept SUV at the North American International Auto Show. Image: Steve Lagreca/Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years