• Tue. Apr 16th, 2024

Citian secures investment for AI-driven transportation technology solutions

Welcome back to the latest episode of The Future of Automotive on CBT News, where we put recent automotive and mobility news into the context of the broader themes impacting the industry.

I’m Steve Greenfield from Automotive Ventures, and I’m glad that you could join us.

This week, I’m excited to share Automotive Ventures’ latest investment out of our Mobility Fund: Citian

Citian delivers innovative transportation technology to improve life through safe and accessible infrastructure.

The company provides the world’s only Software-as-a-service tools that combine engineering expertise and artificial intelligence to furnish the real-time data and critical insights that infrastructure owners need in an interactive digital twin environment. 

For example, Citian’s initial product set allows transportation planners to make data-driven decisions based on Citian’s proprietary analysis of crash data as well as ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliance and pedestrian accessibility shortfalls.

One of the key factors influencing our investment decision is the exceptional leadership team at Citian. The Citian team has extensive industry experience and deeply understands the pain points and intricate technical details of the industry.

The executive team brings a unique blend of industry expertise, innovative thinking, and a proven track record of successful past ventures. Their visionary approach to solving some of the biggest issues facing civil engineers stood out during our interactions.

What Problem Is Citian Solving?

The U.S. $2.1T transportation infrastructure industry is long overdue for modernization. While we’re experiencing rapid technology development in autonomous vehicles, connectivity, and smart infrastructure, we’re at the same time suffering ‘brain drain’ due to the mass retirement of engineers, while compliance needs are growing. Systems are being taxed due to new generational infrastructure investments required across transportation and vehicle electrification. 

Too often, infrastructure data is neglected due to constraints on budget, time, and the all-too-common information gap. As a result, infrastructure owners struggle to address their jurisdictions’ safety, equity, and maintenance needs. That means lives lost and less mobility for many infrastructure users, whether on the road, sidewalk, bike path, or other infrastructure asset.

The opportunity to digitize historical analog processes is paving the way for AI and big data solutions to be applied to some of these opportunities. Presently, civil engineers rely on a complex mix of calculation and reporting tools, leaving them struggling to meet their compliance and operational needs.

The market opportunity for Citian is significant and poised for dramatic growth. Our analysis identified that civil engineers need help, given the complexity and state of their current calculation and reporting tools. We are confident in the company’s ability to further expand its market share. 

Beyond its initial target market of municipalities and professional services firms that serve them, we see future opportunities to leverage Citian’s proprietary datasets to benefit other target markets, including insurance companies, automakers, and even the last-mile delivery ecosystem.

We believe Citian’s software platform is positioned to win. 

The Citian investment aligns with the Automotive Ventures Mobility Fund thesis and our strategic focus areas. The thesis of the fund is to invest in the next wave of innovation in transportation technology. 

Citian is focused on solving a real, validated need at the intersection of AI, Analytics and Process Automation and has the potential to fundamentally improve how pedestrians and vehicles move within cities. Citian’s mission, vision, and values resonate with those of the fund.

This investment is positioned to take dominant market share, has strong potential for eventual exit, and to drive outsized returns for our investors.

We’re thrilled to be part of Citian’s journey and are confident that our investment and contribution to the company will not only yield significant returns but also contribute to the company’s emergence as the leader in the broader mobility industry. We look forward to collaborating closely with the Citian team and playing a proactive role along their path to success.

If you’d like to learn more about Citian, you can check them out at www.citiansolutions.com.

Companies to Watch

Today, our new company to watch is BOXOLOGIC. 

Using today’s standard technology, the average shipped e-commerce package contains 40% void space, resulting in, at a minimum, a 60% increase in void filler use, a 15% increase in corrugated cardboard use, and a 20% increase in transportation costs.

BOXOLOGIC is a Boston-based start-up in the field of e-commerce fulfillment robotics. Boxologic instantly creates the right-size package.

BOXOLOGIC is a manufacturer of packaging boxes intended to reduce unused and wasted areas in boxes. The company’s boxes are custom, robotic made, with right-size packaging which minimizes the use of filler and cargo space, enabling e-commerce businesses to reduce the cost of logistics and wastage.

If you’d like to learn more about BOXOLOGIC, you can check them out at www.boxologic.com.

So that’s it for this week’s Future of Automotive segment.

If you’re an AutoTech entrepreneur working on a solution that helps car dealerships, we want to hear from you. We are actively investing out of our new DealerFund.

If you’re interested in joining our Investment Club to make direct investments into AutoTech and Mobility startups, please join. There is no obligation to start seeing our deal flow, and we continue to have attractive investment deals available to our members.

Don’t forget to check out my book, The Future of Automotive Retail, which is available on Amazon.com. And keep an eye out for my new book, “The Future of Mobility”, which is almost done, and will be out early this year.

Thanks (as always) for your ongoing support and for tuning into CBT News for this week’s Future of Automotive segment. We’ll see you next week!


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