Toyota’s ?call for innovation’

Industry

Toyota is seeking new ideas from startup companies that are working on smart cities. The Japanese automaker, through its Toyota AI Ventures venture capital firm, said at CES in January that it will award funding ranging from $500,000 to $2 million to early-stage startups in what it’s calling a worldwide “call for innovation.”

The company says it is especially interested in ideas around mobility and autonomous vehicles; electrification and its effect on cutting pollution and congestion; making home and building construction more efficient; and helping people accomplish routine tasks.

To be eligible, startups should work in the fields of artificial intelligence, autonomy, cloud, data, mobility and/or robotics and have raised less than $3 million, have a working prototype and have an achievable business model.

The announcement came the same week Toyota revealed plans to build the world’s most technologically advanced neighborhood, on a 175-acre site at the base of Japan’s Mount Fuji, a project Toyota calls the Woven City.

“We see cities as a platform for innovation, and we’re searching for startups building real-world, scalable solutions to improve the quality of life in urban communities, now and in the future,” Jim Adler, managing director of Toyota AI Ventures, said in a statement.

The deadline to respond is April 30. More details on how to apply can be found at https://toyota-ai.ventures/innovation.html.

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