An artificial intelligence (AI) company developing self-driving technologies for aircraft – Shield AI – has announced it has raised $210M in equity financing as part of a Series D fundraising round, boosting its valuation past the billion-dollar mark. As part of the Series D funding round, a further $75M of debt and $15M of equity will be secured in the coming weeks, bringing the total proceeds to $300M.
Shield AI co-founder and CEO Ryan Tseng, stated, “The funding round enables Shield AI to move one step closer to its goal of becoming a 21st-century defense prime through a software-first approach, where products derive a strong competitive advantage from an autonomy and artificial intelligence backbone, similar to what you see across the consumer product market, where great hardware is differentiated through great software.”
In addition to Disruptive Capital, which led Shield AI’s Series C, multiple top tier venture funds participated, including Point72 Ventures, which led Shield AI’s Series C. These new investors join Breyer Capital and Andreessen Horowitz, which led previous rounds.
Hivemind®, the software platform that Shield AI develops, is a software stack designed for self-driving autonomy in military and commercial aircraft. It is designed from the ground up to be multi-role and multi-vehicle. To execute dynamic flight maneuvers, the software utilizes state-of-the-art algorithms for mapping, planning, and state estimation. It also teaches winning tactics and strategies through reinforcement learning. Using Hivemind® on aircraft allows full autonomy and is designed to operate fully on the edge when GPS and communication are degraded and a high threat is present.
With the Series D, Shield AI, and its acquired companies, Heron Systems, and Martin UAV will be able to accelerate their plans for growth in the defense and commercial markets. Shield AI offers the Nova and V-BAT UAS, which integrate Hivemind® for autonomy. The V-BAT UAS will be integrated with Hivemind®. Shield AI offers self-driving solutions to third-party aircraft.