24 Jun 2020 | 11.00 am
AI Platform For Bus Transport Raises €2m
CitySwift can predict how busy a bus will be two weeks ahead
24 Jun 2020 | 11.00 am
Galway transport data company CitySwift has announced a €2m funding round led by Irelandia Investments, Act Venture Capital and private investors.
The €2m comes on the back of the firm’s launch of a new AI platform to be used by British transport companies to predict transport capacity on bus networks and orchestrate the movement of passengers and vehicles in a city-wide transport system. It brings total funding raised to €3.5m for the Galway vemture founded in 2016.
CitySwift says its platform uses big data and machine learning to improve efficiency, profitability and growth. It “augments and seamlessly integrates” with existing bus technology systems, providing a “deeper understanding of network performance and enhanced network planning with significantly reduced timescales”.
Chief executive Brian O’Rourke said: “The CitySwift platform has been leveraged to enable our clients and their passengers to make informed, data-driven decisions as they navigate the road to recovery in these ever-changing times.”
With the new platform, passengers will be able to see how busy their bus is going to be up to two weeks in advance of travelling, based on the system’s AI predictions. The venture funding has been earmarked to speed up product development and will be hiring over the next year.
Passengers can access a colour-coded timetable of bus routes, which shows what buses are likely to be busy or have space, and at each bus stop on the route. The technology has recently been deployed on Go-Ahead Group’s entire UK operations using When2Travel.co. It’s also used by National Express and more bus operators are showing interest.
Go North-East managing director Martijn Gilbert commented: “I think it could be the most powerful use of big data yet in terms of aiding local bus networks and customer service. That’s a bold statement, but we are really excited about it.”
CutySwift says its system “visualises a birds-eye view of a cities mobility data and creates an operational plan and schedule simulations that orchestrate the movements of passengers and every vehicle in a city-wide transportation ecosystem, enabling public transport operators to choose the best options available and create a superior service for passengers while significantly reducing operating costs for cities”.
Meanwhile, UCD spin-out PlasmaBound has announced the closing of a €1.1m investment round.
The venture has developed a novel surface treatment technology to enable global manufacturing industries to reduce product weight and meet fuel efficiency and carbon emissions requirements.
Funding has been sourced from the Atlantic Bridge University Fund, Enterprise Ireland, and a number of private investors. Legal counsel was provided by Flynn O’Driscoll.
PlasmaBound was co-founded in 2017 by Dr James Barry, Alan Barry and Xavier Montibert following the completion of Enterprise Ireland Commercialisation Funding.
CEO Alan Barry (pictured above with technical director James Barry) commented: “Our CPA technology supports the accelerated adoption of lightweight composite materials into multi-material structural assemblies, by enabling reliable adhesive joining.
“This will allow international enterprises, who are aggressively pursuing light weighting opportunities, to meet current and future carbon emissions and fuel efficiency requirements, with no waste production, reduced reliance on metal fasteners and lower production cost through in-line operation simplification.
“Our technology took over five years to develop at UCD, so today’s announcement is a significant milestone for the company.”
PlasmaBound was previously awarded €50,000 through the ESA Business Incubation Programme and secured an additional €40,000 through the competitive ESA Technology Transfer Demonstrator Fund.
Main Photo: CitySwift founders Brian O’Rourke (left) and Alan Farrelly