- San Francisco-based driverless-vehicle technology developer Faction reimagines urban transportation and micro-logistics
- TDK Ventures leads next funding, targeted at customer expansion
- Joining in the funding are: Ducera Partners, Trucks Venture Capital, and Fifty Years
October 26, 2023
TDK Corporation (TSE: 6762) announced today that subsidiary TDK Ventures is leading the latest round of financing in driverless-technology developer Faction. Currently joining them as co-investors are Ducera Partners, Trucks Venture Capital, and Fifty Years. This latest round will be used to target customer expansion over the last quarter of 2023 and throughout 2024. Details are forthcoming. Faction has assembled an experienced team previously responsible for the launch of driverless vehicles ranging from light EVs to full-size semi-trucks. Its team is comprised of engineers experienced in AI, vehicle systems, vehicle safety, big data, sensors, hardware, V2V communication, logistics, and more.
Fully autonomous passenger vehicles may capture the imagination, but practical solutions, will deliver the next generation of profitable, impactful business models. Faction is leading the charge to commercialize supervised autonomous vehicles leveraging teleoperation technologies. Its driverless vehicles incorporate the affordability and maneuverability of motorcycles with the speed and performance of cars to create small-scale delivery vehicles that will clear the way for smarter cities and a more sustainable tomorrow.
Faction’s technology architecture is built to make driverless systems work seamlessly. It has created innovative approaches to fleet management, remote vehicle assistance, accurate positioning, and safety. By designing for the majority of short urban trips of less than 5 miles, Faction is deploying right-sized vehicles for their customers’ use cases in mobility and last mile logistics. TDK and other investors agree with Faction that the traditional practice of using legacy vehicles for these short trips isn’t sustainable.
“The support that TDK, along with our co-investors, has provided to Faction has allowed us to grow our technology and we are excited about the next phase of our journey,” stated Ain McKendrick, Faction Founder and CEO. “It was evident to us from the beginning that the use of large legacy vehicles was not sustainable from an emissions, gridlock, and energy-use perspective for what we envisioned. Our right-sized, driverless vehicles are smart for city use and an affordable solution for the planet. Companies such as TDK Ventures, Ducera Partners, Trucks Venture Capital, and Fifty Years are a big part in helping us fulfill our dreams.”
“TDK Ventures sees its partnership with Faction as an ideal match in both vision and technology” commented Nicolas Sauvage, President of TDK Ventures. “The Faction mission dovetails perfectly with our desire to scale technologies that further the world’s digital, energy, and environmental transformations. Faction addresses all three components by applying a digital approach to a problem plaguing both the energy and sustainability spaces.”
Along with financial backing, TDK Ventures views its investments in technologies as a medium for leveraging many of the other advances upon which the company focuses and as an opportunity to contribute to the greater good of humanity. Its mobility investments in general, and its stake in Faction in particular, promise to achieve objectives including: reducing the world’s dependence on fossil fuels and reducing the pollution associated with heavy traffic and internal-combustion engines. Concentrating on electrifying delivery and other fleets rather than passenger vehicles leverages decarbonization efforts and alleviates many of the demand-driven, charging-capacity challenges other sectors of the industry may face.
To learn more about TDK Ventures, interested startups or investment partners should visit www.tdk-ventures.com or reach out at .
About TDK Corporation
TDK Corporation is a world leader in electronic solutions for the smart society based in Tokyo, Japan. Built on a foundation of material sciences mastery, TDK welcomes societal transformation by resolutely remaining at the forefront of technological evolution and deliberately “Attracting Tomorrow.” It was established in 1935 to commercialize ferrite, a key material in electronic and magnetic products. TDK‘s comprehensive, innovation-driven portfolio features passive components such as ceramic, aluminum electrolytic and film capacitors, as well as magnetics, high-frequency, and piezo and protection devices. The product spectrum also includes sensors and sensor systems such as temperature and pressure, magnetic, and MEMS sensors. In addition, TDK provides power supplies and energy devices, magnetic heads and more. These products are marketed under the product brands TDK, EPCOS, InvenSense, Micronas, Tronics and TDK-Lambda. TDK focuses on demanding markets in automotive, industrial and consumer electronics, and information and communication technology. The company has a network of design and manufacturing locations and sales offices in Asia, Europe, and in North and South America. In fiscal 2023, TDK posted total sales of USD 16.1 billion and employed about 103,000 people worldwide.
About TDK Ventures
TDK Ventures Inc. invests in startups to bolster innovation in materials science, energy/power and related areas typically underrepresented in venture capital portfolios. Established in 2019 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of TDK Corporation, the corporate venture company’s vision is to propel the digital and energy transformations of segments such as health and wellness, next-generation transportation, robotics and industrial, mixed reality and the wider IoT/IIoT markets. TDK Ventures will co-invest and support promising portfolio companies by providing technical expertise and access to global markets where TDK operates. Interested startups or investment partners may contact TDK Ventures: www.tdk-ventures.com or .
Faction Technology, Inc. is a Silicon Valley startup that develops driverless solutions based on light electric vehicles. Founded in February 2020, Faction is on a mission to revolutionize micro-logistics and vehicle-on-demand. The company believes the future of sustainable transportation is to develop driverless vehicles that are safe, cost-effective, and right-sized to serve a range of use cases for both business and passenger transportation needs. For more information visit www.faction.us.
About Ducera Partners
Ducera Partners is an independent investment banking advisory firm with expertise in strategic advisory, mergers & acquisitions, restructuring, liability management, capital markets, and wealth management. The firm also deploys growth capital to early-stage companies through its Ducera Investments platform. Since its founding in 2015, Ducera Partners has advised on over $750 billion in transactions across various industries. The firm has offices in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Stamford, CT. For more information about Ducera Partners, please visit www.ducerapartners.com.
About Trucks Venture Capital
Known as the No.1 early-stage fund focused on transportation technology and praised as ‘the best at picking tomorrow’s transportation startups,’ Trucks funds the entrepreneurs building the future of transportation. The firm is based in San Francisco, California. For more information about Trucks Venture Capital, please visit www.trucks.vc.
About Fifty Years
Fifty Years is a San Francisco based seed fund that backs entrepreneurs solving the world’s biggest problems with technology. They’re a leading pre-seed and seed investor in deep tech. They’ve seeded many startups shaping the world for the better — companies like Memphis Meats, Solugen, Athelas, Astranis, and Opentrons. For more information, visit www.fiftyyears.com.