Wayve CEO Alex Kendall Has Bill Gates’ Attention
Since launching Wayve in 2017, CEO Alex Kendall has often felt like the self-driving car industry’s mostly ignored little brother, Tom Huddleston reports for CNBC.
For years, Kendall and co-founder Amar Shah pitched their London-based autonomous driving software company as a “contrarian” alternative to companies like Alphabet and Tesla. Wayve focused entirely on artificial intelligence, while most of the industry used devices like cameras, radar and laser-powered lidar sensors, Huddleston writes.
Then, AI hype exploded, bringing Wayve along with it. The company impressed Bill Gates during a London “test ride”, partnered with Microsoft on AI development, and landed more than $200 million in new funding from investors including Microsoft and Virgin. Its valuation is likely above $1 billion, CNBC reported last year. (Wayve declined to confirm the figure.)
Now, Kendall feels less like an outsider, and Wayve’s future looks a bit more mainstream, he says.
“The fact that we [are] taking on the biggest and most inspiring companies in the world … makes it extraordinary.”
Original article by Tom Huddleston Jr., CNBC, August 18, 2023.