Listen to this article
The Seoul-based company plans to use the funding to expand its global reach. Last year, it established its U.S. office in San Francisco. MORAI hopes to establish offices in Germany, Japan and Singapore. According to CEO Jiwon Jung, the company will double its headcount worldwide by the end of the year.
“We will focus on utilizing the funding to hire quality talents,” Jung said. “Together with industry talents, we will continue sharpening our technological edge to further enhance our global competitiveness.”
Additionally, MORAI will use the funding to research different applications for its simulation technology, including urban air mobility (UAM). MORAI provides high-definition, map-based 3D simulation testing through it’s product MORAI SIM. Simulation testing is an important part of the autonomous vehicle development process. It provides companies the opportunity to perform repetitive simulation tests to prove the reliability of its systems.
The company has 3D replications of more than 20 cities around the world. MORAI SIM can automatically convert HD map data into digital twins. This allows for large-scale simulation environments.
In 2021, the company brought in $1.7 million in revenue. It has more than 100 customers worldwide, including Hyundai Mobis, Naver Labs and 42dot.
Korea Investment Partners, KB Investment and Korea Development Bank led the Series B funding round. Existing investors Naver D2 Startup Factory, Hyundai Motor Group, Kakao Ventures and Atinum Investment also participated.
“MORAI’s simulator technology will play a key role in enhancing the safety and functionality of self-driving cars,” Geun-ho Kim, executive director of Korea Investment Partners, said. “MORAI has the potential to become one of the leading companies in the global autonomous driving sector, and we are looking forward to the company’s future growth.”
The company was founded by Jung, Jun Hong and Sugwan Lee, all former KAIST autonomous driving researchers who worked on autonomous vehicle simulation platforms.