Volvo Group Venture Capital has invested in the Canadian founded company Waabi Innovation, developing next generation autonomous trucking technology.

“The investment highlights the companies’ shared commitment to redefine the way we move goods and to accelerate the deployment of future transport solutions,” Volvo said in a statement.

“Waabi is using advanced artificial intelligence technology to test, assess skills, and ultimately teach a virtual driver to manoeuvre safely and efficiently in a commercial-ready autonomous trucking solution. We are impressed by what they have accomplished and see that Volvo Group can add considerable strategic value to the development of their business. We are currently exploring ways to cooperate,” said Martin Witt, president of Volvo Group Venture Capital.

Freight movement is rapidly increasing, with the trucking industry moving the vast majority of the goods. Accommodating this growth has placed tremendous pressure on every part of the supply chain industry. Fully autonomous trucking transports are key to provide additional capacity, better safety and improved efficiency but also support drivers on tiresome routes.

“Partnerships and investments are key to commercialising autonomous transport solutions at scale. We welcome Volvo Group’s decision to invest in companies like Waabi who are building the new transport ecosystem,” said Nils Jaeger, president of Volvo Autonomous Solutions.

Waabi is developing next generation artificial intelligence technology to solve autonomy at scale. The company recently unveiled the Waabi Driver, its core autonomous trucking product, designed for large scale commercialisation and safe deployment. This is complemented by Waabi World, a scalable simulator, exposing the driver to the vast diversity of scenarios needed to hone driving skills and paving the way to widespread adoption of autonomous trucking.

“Autonomy will one day transform trucking and logistics, but the self-driving industry has not solved this challenge, yet,” said Raquel Urtasun, CEO of Waabi. “Our AI-first approach is the key to unlocking this reality at scale. Volvo’s investment in Waabi marks the next step in our journey, particularly around our shared commitment to safety.”