The University of Essex has helped a new AI-powered motoring company which builds driverless cars secure hundreds of million pounds in funding.

Conigital is a tech start-up business which specialises in creating self-driving vehicles powered by artificial intelligence.

The company has just received a staggering £500 million grant thanks to the help of the University of Essex, in Wivenhoe. 

The investment comes after the university's enterprise-championing Angels@Essex - which matches investors with innovative entrepreneurs - spotted Conigital back in October 2020.

Saffron Walden Reporter: Future - A fleet of driverless Conigital carsFuture - A fleet of driverless Conigital cars (Image: Conigital)

Over the last three years Angels@Essex has offered the start-up advice and guidance, which has culminated in the firm being awarded the huge windfall.

The money will now help the business develop their “full-stack lift and shift driverless vehicle platform ConICAV™ for any vehicle type.”

The company’s technology allows them to build vehicles which do not require a person to be at the helm during operation.

Specifically, the technology is being implemented for industrial and commercial fleets.

Speaking about the company’s fruitful relationship with the University of Essex, Conigital founder Don Dhaliwal said: “The University of Essex and its Angels@Essex team have been behind us all the way on this incredible journey of ours.  
“From our initial fund raise, subsequent seed rounds, awards and now our Series A, the University has supported us in so many ways, with advice, contacts, networking and always there for us when we needed them.“

“We have valued your consistent friendship and wish to continue our relationship with you in the future.” 

Within the funding sector, the A series level of funding that Mr Dhaliwal refers to is for businesses which are deemed stable and robust enough to repay any financial commitments.

John Stenhouse, the business support manager at Angels@Essex, said: “The team at Angels@Essex all agreed from the onset Conigital was an exceptional business with massive potential

"We all recognised the leadership skills of Don Dhaliwal and his excellent management team, all vital ingredients to scale and grow rapidly.  
“It was a pleasure working with Don and his team who listened and reacted positively to the support we provided along their incredible journey to Series A, sharing the highs and lows and seeking alternative strategies to solve new problems.” 

“A good business idea will get funded - this only proves our long-held belief.”