FlixBus partners up with Bouden Coach Travel

FlixBus partners up with Bouden Coach Travel

Press release provided by Flixbus

Leading European coach company FlixBus has teamed up with Bouden Coach Travel, offering daily travel between Birmingham and London.

After teaming up with Stanley Travel last week  – enabling transport between Newcastle, Leeds, Sunderland, Middlesbrough and Manchester – the family-owned company has secured the new partnership to expand their routes. As part of the deal, Bouden will be adding a 59-seater to the FlixBus network, rebranded in Flix’s signature green shade.

Adel Bouden, Managing Director of Bouden Coach Travel, said:

“We see joining the FlixBus network as an opportunity to work with another forward-thinking company offering a fresh approach to a traditional industry.”

FlixBus will also be launching new cross-country lines with long-term partner McGill’s today, between Dundee and Bristol. This will add services from Perth, Dunfermline, Edinburgh, Manchester, and Birmingham, adding Carlisle as a new destination on the network.

Additional lines will also begin to and from Perth Bus Station, connecting passengers to Glasgow, Stirling and Perth Park and Ride, as well as Edinburgh and Dunfermline.

FlixBus, as a widespread travel options in over 40 countries, is also launching their business in India. As home of one of the largest bus markets in the world, will launch their service in India in 2024.

André Schwämmlein, co-founder and CEO of Flix, said:

“Our mission is to offer affordable and sustainable travel options for everyone, and we see significant demand for such services in India.


“This gives the opportunity for Flix to be a key local player in the development of sustainable travel industry, setting up infrastructure and further development in this area.”

PIONIX secures funding to unify, accelerate, and open-source the electric vehicle eco-system.

PIONIX secures funding to unify, accelerate, and open-source the electric vehicle eco-system.

Press Release provided by: PIONIX

Bad Schönborn, Germany – PIONIX GmbH, a leading pioneer in open-source software for the electric vehicle (EV) charging ecosystem, today announced it has raised more than €5 million in an oversubscribed Seed financing round. The round was led by yabeo Impact AG and Pale blue dot, with Vireo Ventures, MobilityFund and Axeleo Capital also participating. The funding will help establish the company’s open-source stack EVerest as a world-wide standard for efficient development in the EV charging industry.

Founded in 2021, PIONIX GmbH, set its mission to accelerate and standardize the young industry of EV charging. Experiences fromfounders of other industries (Drone startup MAVinci, bought by Intel) about the power of open-source technology have led PIONIX to initiate the open-source software stack EVerest. EVerest is aiming to establish a standard for an unified EV eco system by eliminating the pain points like lacking compatibility, resource expenditure and innovation hurdles.

“Our mission is to boost the development of the EV charging industry – to make it quicker, cost-efficient and more innovative. With the funding, EVerest can become the unified and modular platform for EV charging technology. We will grow in a rather global position and enable even more features.” said Dr. Marco Möller, CEO of PIONIX GmbH. “It follows a similar approach like Android where we have a well developed widely used core which is customized by many companies out there. Less complexity, more standardization and lower costs for the entire EV charging business.”

EVerest is part of LF Energy, the open-source foundation focused on the power systems sector, hosted within The Linux Foundation. Formed in 2018, LF Energy’s aim is to spur the uptake of digital technologies within the electricity sector and adjoining sectors using open source software and practices. Many major tech companies have partnered with LF Energy to achieve those goals.

Today, many manufacturers of EV charging stations develop their own proprietary software, even though products need to work in an eco-system with other brands, cars and energy networks. PIONIX’s solution is offering a standardized core, which helps develop products quicker, save costs and make sure new products are compatible with the entire grid of players.

“We see the potential for PIONIX to be an absolute growth accelerator for charging stations. PIONIX’s solution can thus have a decisive impact on the global spread of electromobility. It is precisely this potential that we want to leverage together with the experienced founding team,” said Christian Dietsche, Managing Director at yabeo Impact AG, the early-stage investor from Munich that focuses on sustainable business models.

“Thanks to their great strengths and advantages, open source projects are also becoming increasingly important in the automotive industry. And not without reason. Open source has the transformative speed and disruptive power to become the game changer for mobility transformation. Pionix’s successful financing round is further proof of this,” adds PIONIX advisor Peter Mertens, automotive industry veteran (ex-CTO of AUDI and VOLVO). 

Since its founding, PIONIX has successfully developed and distributed applications for different component and charging station manufacturers like Texas Instruments and Mahle. This pioneering work also led to multiple awards including Make it Matter by EWS Schönau, the >SMART> GREEN ACCELERATOR award, and 2022 startup of the year at Automobilwoche Kongress (organized by McKinsey).

BlackBerry QNX Releases Ultra-Scalable, High-Performance Compute Ready Operating System to Advance Software Development Efforts for Next Generation Vehicles and IoT Systems

BlackBerry QNX Releases Ultra-Scalable, High-Performance Compute Ready Operating System to Advance Software Development Efforts for Next Generation Vehicles and IoT Systems

QNX Software Development Platform 8.0 Maximizes Multi-Core Processor Performance for Generations to Come

WATERLOO, CANADA – May 17, 2023BlackBerry Limited (NYSE: BB; TSX: BB) today announced the early access release of QNX® Software Development Platform (SDP) 8.0 to enable automakers and IoT systems developers to deliver more powerful products at lower costs, while maintaining the unparalleled safety, security and reliability standards that QNX technology has long been known for.  

Powered by its new next generation QNX® operating system (OS), the company’s highest performance, safe and secure embedded OS ever, SDP 8.0 is designed to realize the performance potential of the increasing number of multi-core processors that automakers and IoT systems developers are selecting for their products and is the result of intense R&D work utilizing BlackBerry QNX’s leading IP and unique experience in high performance EDGE computing.

Providing a stepchange in performance while maintaining its competitive differentiator as an inherently safe and secure, POSIX compliant, real-time microkernelbased OS, the new architecture has shown animpressive 1-to-1 performance scaling factor as the number of cores increase, unprecedented for a commercial real time operating system. With the next generation QNX OS, customers can now fully realize the performance of next generation processors and reduce their overall costs by maximizing utilization of the available compute resources, a boon for the likes of automakers whose shift towards Software-Defined Vehicles has brought an exponential amount of software-based architecture complexity.

QNX SDP 8.0 lays the foundation for the next generation BlackBerry® QNX® product portfolio, including next generation QNX® OS for Safety, QNX® Hypervisor and QNX® Hypervisor for Safety, allowing developers to reap the benefits of this new technology irrespective of which BlackBerry QNX technology best suits their requirement.  

“The automotive industry is redefining software in the vehicle,” said John Wall, Senior Vice President and Head of BlackBerry QNX. “Automotive architectures are transitioning to zonal, central compute and ultimately Software Defined Vehicles.  The top to bottom scalability inherent to SDP 8.0, the QNX OS for Safety and the QNX Hypervisor makes this a natural choice for automakers looking for a total car OS.

BlackBerry is working with NVIDIA to integrate the QNX OS microkernel on the next-generation NVIDIA DRIVE Thor, which delivers 2000 TFLOPS of performance and consolidates automated driving with AI cockpit on a single centralized platform.

“The combination of our DRIVE Thor centralized computer and the new QNX OS will serve as a powerful foundation on which OEMs can build next-generation automotive systems that offer the highest levels of safety and security,” said Ali Kani, Vice President of Automotive at NVIDIA. “This represents another major milestone in a nearly 20-year collaboration with BlackBerry QNX that has helped both companies move to the forefront of the automotive industry.”

“With more than 300 million vehicles capable of over-the-air software updates expected to be on the road globally by 2032, automakers are clamoring for better tools to help them develop compelling technology features in the software-defined vehicle,” said Alex Oyler, a director at SBD Automotive, a leading global automotive technology research and consulting firm. “A secured-by-design operating system that seamlessly integrates with other software components on a high-performance system-on-chip represents the foundation of a safe, secure, and seamless experience for drivers. Both automakers and suppliers rely on validated software and well-integrated development tools to help them more efficiently build and maintain differentiating software for their fleets.” 

The early access release of QNX SDP 8.0 is available now for evaluation and product development. General availability is scheduled for later in 2023.  

 For more information on BlackBerry QNX products and engineering services for embedded systems and to request early access to QNX SDP 8.0, please visit BlackBerry.QNX.com/SDP8EA. 

About BlackBerry

BlackBerry (NYSE: BB; TSX: BB) provides intelligent security software and services to enterprises and governments around the world.  The company secures more than 500M endpoints including over 215M vehicles.  Based in Waterloo, Ontario, the company leverages AI and machine learning to deliver innovative solutions in the areas of cybersecurity, safety and data privacy solutions, and is a leader in the areas of endpoint management, endpoint security, encryption, and embedded systems.  BlackBerry’s vision is clear – to secure a connected future you can trust. 

BlackBerry. Intelligent Security. Everywhere.  

For more information, visit BlackBerry.com and follow @BlackBerry.

Trademarks, including but not limited to BLACKBERRY and EMBLEM Design are the trademarks or registered trademarks of BlackBerry Limited, and the exclusive rights to such trademarks are expressly reserved.  All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.  BlackBerry is not responsible for any third-party products or services.

Media Contacts:

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Former president and CEO of Nissan Hiroto Saikawa joins UK-based shared mobility tech start-up to lead Asian expansion

Former president and CEO of Nissan Hiroto Saikawa joins UK-based shared mobility tech start-up to lead Asian expansion

The former president and CEO of Nissan Hiroto Saikawa has joined a tech start-up based in the UK as they look to expand into the Asian market.

Coastr is a ‘shared mobility’ tech start-up aiming to completely digitise the car rental, car subscription, car sharing operations and customer experience ecosystem with its fully integrated, connected mobility enabled software as a service solution for shared mobility fleet operators.

Using their technology platform to enable shared mobility solutions, the firm aims to reduce private ownership of vehicles through faster, digital access to shared vehicles to reduce the overall number of vehicles and decarbonise the planet.

In recent years, travel and mobility technology has evolved from a pure focus on operational efficiency to digitising the customer experience, as well as other parts of the mobility ecosystem spanning industries such as insurance and finance.

This has been made possible by the data-driven approach adopted by mobility tech startups, such as Coastr, who generate swathes of useful operational data on customer and operator behaviour. As the shared mobility industry alone is projected to reach a market value of £1.49 trillion by 2027, the fast-growing start-up, originally based in Edinburgh, has been able to expand into three additional locations across London, California, and Bengaluru, India in just four years.

Now, as the firm looks to further their expansion into Asia, they have attracted former president and CEO of Nissan Hiroto Saikawa to join their ranks and guide the way.

Mr. Saikawa explains that, since his retirement from Nissan, he has been working with growing IT ventures in Japan, and believes that Coastr can be a dominant player as the shared mobility industry breaks new ground in the east.

“After 100 years of growth and prosperity, the automotive industry is now undergoing substantial change and evolution. As someone who was in the business of providing hardware for mobility over many years, it’s astonishing to see the pace of the growth of the MaaS (mobility-as-a-service) as a new business field, and it may become a dominant player quite soon – replacing most of the major original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in the market.

While OEMs are still dominant in Japan, the UK and US seem to be ahead of the curve and embracing this move towards MaaS. I believe Coastr is leading the way in this. I am very pleased and excited about this opportunity and looking forward to working with Biswajit and the Coastr team”.

Speaking on the new partnership, Coastr CEO Biswajit Kundu Roy says:

“We are extremely excited that Saikawa-san has agreed to be a part of Coastr’s journey. Having him join the advisory team will be a huge boost for Coastr, and not only in steering our expansion plans into the Japanese and Asian markets – his unparalleled experience in the automotive industry will be invaluable to our board to help us shape our strategy and achieve our long term vision”.

Coastr is digitising the vehicle rental, flexi leasing, car subscription, and car sharing ecosystem with its Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform for vehicle rental and fleet management. Coastr brings together unique tech-enabled partnerships with key players in the market and connected vehicle solutions using telematics (IoT) and direct integration with vehicle manufacturers to manage retail and commercial fleets and enable contactless services. Coastr’s mission is to decarbonise the mobility sector by enabling wider access to shared mobility services in the market and make fleet operators future ready to cater to new consumer demand and market trends.

Stanley Travel Joins FlixBus UK Network

Stanley Travel Joins FlixBus UK Network

Press release provided by Flixbus

Green coach brand FlixBus has announced a new partner, earned recognition operator Stanley Travel joining its UK network on 25 May.

Delivering daily services between Newcastle, Leeds, Sunderland, Middlesbrough and Manchester, the high-quality family-owned operator is the latest in a long line of coach firms expanding FlixBus routes across the country.

Established in 1961, family-run Stanley Travel originally began as a taxi firm and has built a strong reputation over decades.

The operation is now in its 3rd generation of management by the Scott family and is still based in Stanley in County Durham.

In recent years, Stanley Travel has focused investment on coaches for private hire, as well as contractual work with local schools and colleges, sports teams, and local Universities.

This diversification was the key to their success pre-pandemic, through which the company came out even stronger. Stanley Travel says joining the FlixBus network enhances its diversification strategy and gives more balance to its operation.

Stanley Travel’s Transport Manager Gavin Scott commented: “We know the value of spreading risk, particularly after the COVID years. That’s what initially attracted us to FlixBus express work, offering another string to our bow in terms of revenue. The team at FlixBus truly listened to us and did everything to make this work for Stanley Travel as well as themselves.”

The company is the first DVSA Earned Recognition operator on the FlixBus network, which holds organisation to high driver and vehicle standards. The scheme requires robust compliance regimes with strict safety regulations and frequent regulatory checks.

Stanley Travel is also part of the Guild of British Coach Operators, the association of quality coach companies.

Andreas Schorling, Managing Director of FlixBus UK said: “We are thrilled to welcome Stanley Travel to the FlixBus network. Their glowing reputation among the industry is well-deserved, and we have seen their commitment to delivering excellence in operations through their accolades and achievements.

“Stanley already has strong relationships with some of our other key partners, and it’s fantastic to our network of operators supporting each other. We are building a team of ambitious quality-focused operators that share our vision of building the largest coach network in the UK.”

Throughout 2022, more than 60 million passengers in 40 countries on four continents travelled with the Flix group, which includes FlixBus, FlixTrain, Greyhound in North America and Kamil Koç in Türkiye.

Gavin added: “I see FlixBus as where Amazon were 10 years ago; anyone who got involved in the early stages is now reaping the rewards. The innovative technology behind FlixBus, which is unlike anything else we’ve seen in the industry, and their success within other markets. FlixBus has entered UK to stay, on a mission to overtake established market players. We are impressed by this vision and can see the rapid growth already delivering on their ambition.”

VinFast and Fixico enter European partnership

VinFast and Fixico enter European partnership

VinFast has today announced that it has selected Fixico for its European body repeair network and scalable EV aftersales service management platform. This new partnership enables VinFast to create a differentiating customer experience.  

Through partnering with Fixico, VinFast offers customers access to a network of 3,000+ body repair shops across Europe. Under the European collaboration agreement, the service will be initially available in France, Germany and the Netherlands. 

Through Fixico’s platform, VinFast can make a curated selection of high-tech body workshops that meet their requirements, whilst managing its training and quality assurance processes stated the release.  

Most importantly, the partnership enables VinFast to have full control over the customer journey, including repair processes to constantly optimise customer experiences. Additionally, VinFast can onboard a unique mix of service providers to create a full-service setup to fortify its competitiveness in the European markets. 

“In addition to excellent quality and good pricing, VinFast strives to stand out with its aftersales services. Alongside a 10-year warranty that VinFast offers, one of the industry-leading policies, and our outstanding services, the cooperation with Fixico and their innovative proposition will help bring an excellent aftersales experience for our customers in Europe. Together we will make electrified mobility a more reliable and enjoyable choice for everyone,” said Jean-Christophe Mercier, Vice President Aftersales and Customer Ownership Experience of VinFast Europe. 

Customers will be able to conveniently schedule body repair services through a digital platform connecting them to a pan-European network of 3,000+ body workshops, which enables seamless customer journeys and full-service spare part management to ensure short service times. 

“VinFast has rightly recognised the importance of delivering not only the best cars but also the best customer experience to stand out in a competitive industry. We are thrilled to partner with such a market-leading EV manufacturer as VinFast and prove how this revolutionary offering will redefine what it means to own an EV and accelerate the transition towards a more environmentally friendly future,” said Derk Roodhuyzen de Vries, CEO and co-founder of Fixico.

Source: Fixico

Archer Aviation completes assembly of the Midnight aircraft

Archer Aviation completes assembly of the Midnight aircraft

Archer Aviation has announced it has now completed the final assembly of its first Midnight aircraft. With final assembly and initial testing complete, last week the aircraft was shipped from Archer’s Palo Alto facility to its flight test facility in Salinas, California and reassembled.

Archer has said that it will now take this aircraft through a series of ground tests leading up to its planned first flight this summer. The Midnight aircraft has recently garnered significant attention from the U.S. Department of Defense given its payload capabilities.

This Midnight aircraft will enable Archer to perform critical “company testing” to accelerate and reduce risk on its certification program with the Federal Aviation Administration (“FAA”) in advance of “for credit” certification testing that the company plans to begin early next year with piloted Midnight aircraft.

The strategy with this aircraft is to allow Archer to fly many of the same test points that will be needed during piloted “for credit” flight testing in order to further validate the aircraft before the FAA witnesses and participates in the testing – a customary practice in many aircraft certification programs.

Component manufacturing is already underway for Archer’s conforming Midnight aircraft. Archer is targeting the completion of final assembly of its initial conforming Midnight aircraft in Q4 2023 and to begin piloted flight test operations in early 2024.

“Today we announced our exciting progress that the final assembly of our first Midnight aircraft is now complete and it is preparing for its flight test program,” said Adam Goldstein, Archer’s Founder and CEO. “This aircraft will accelerate and reduce risk on our certification program paving the way for our team to focus on building and conducting piloted operations with conforming aircraft to support the goal of entering into service in 2025.”

Archer’s industry-leading team, alongside its key strategic partners, Stellantis and United Airlines, continues to advance its aircraft development and commercial operations with impressive speed and efficiency.

The company has also established a significant lead over industry peers on the manufacturing and commercial operations fronts with the build out of its high-volume manufacturing facility in Covington, Georgia underway and announced key strategic electric air taxi routes in New York and Chicago.

With a range of up to 100 miles, Archer’s Midnight aircraft is designed to perform rapid back-to-back flights with minimal charge time in between. Archer’s goal is to transform inter-city travel, replacing 60-90 minute commutes by car that can take over an hour in traffic with  ~10-20 minute electric air taxi flights that are safe, sustainable, low noise and cost competitive with ground transportation.

Source: Archer

Berrys Coaches Expands on FlixBus Network

Berrys Coaches Expands on FlixBus Network

FlixBus, the UK’s fastest growing coach provider, has doubled its partnership with industry mainstay Berrys Coaches ahead of the summer season.

The new route between Taunton and Newcastle launched on 27 April, offering daily journeys to cities including Leeds, Sheffield, Birmingham, Bristol University of West England (UWE) and Bristol city centre.

An initial relationship began in 2021, which saw Berrys connections available to book via FlixBus’ channels. This developed into an official partnership in April 2022, with Berrys joining the green FlixBus network to launch the Plymouth – London line. Berrys Coaches is now expanding its fleet with the brand.

Andreas Schorling, Managing Director of FlixBus UK said: “This is a fantastic partnership, based on our shared values and entrepreneurial spirit of the Berrys team. The company has significant experience in express coaches which means they consistently deliver high quality. We’re delighted that Berrys has doubled their commitment to our network, bolstering the long-term partnership with new connections in line with passenger demand. We look forward to working together for decades to come!”

Established in 1920, Taunton-based Berrys Coaches has a rich history and is highly respected among the industry for its impeccable customer service and excellence in operations.

Alongside FlixBus work, Berrys has a diverse portfolio, including day tours, coach hire as well as a high-spec superfast service to London from Somerset and Wiltshire, which launched in 1983.

James Berry, Transport & General Manager of Berrys Coaches said: “FlixBus’ vision for long-term expansion appealed to us from the off and we’re witnessing their ambition to become the UK’s largest coach provider coming to life! Berrys has extensive experience in long-distance express work, which has helped us to assess the Flix model as the right choice.

“We have had a really enjoyable year building a truly equal relationship, and we’re looking forward to delivering more routes than ever before. Embarking on a partnership at an early stage in FlixBus’ growth journey has proved a strong strategic decision for Berrys, and we’re proud to be a part of the revolution of the UK coach industry.”

The recent network expansion, which coincided with FlixBus’ second anniversary in the UK, means that the sustainable travel tech company now serves 50 destinations across England, Scotland and Wales.

Adds Schorling: “Overwhelming demand for FlixBus services has shown the strength of our strategy since entering the UK express coach market. We saw 190% increase in passengers in Q1 of 2023 compared to the same period last year and we are doubling the size of the network.

“Network growth continues apace, and we have big plans for the summer months as we deliver on our mission to become the market leader.”

Coach operators interested in hearing more about collaborating with FlixBus should contact uk-partnerships@flixbus.com


Notes: Berrys vehicles on the FlixBus network include two Van Hools and two Jonckheeres. Vehicles will include registration plates 0007 FLX and 0008 FLX.

HumanForest and BetterHelp partner to help Londoners move in a fun & healthy way

HumanForest and BetterHelp partner to help Londoners move in a fun & healthy way

Press Release

Provided by Human Forest

Ahead of National Mental Health Awareness Week, HumanForest has teamed up with BetterHelp, the world’s largest professional online therapy platform. BetterHelp will be sponsoring HumanForest users’ rides and rewarding riders with extra free minutes.

●  BetterHelp has become the latest corporate partner sponsoring HumanForest users’ free daily ten minutes of riding

●  BetterHelp will also be using HumanForest’s innovative adtech platform to reward users with further free minutes for engaging with BetterHelp content

●  The partnership will exist for an initial period of two months and ties in with BetterHelp’s UK campaign for Mental Health Awareness month which includes a partnership with British singer, Perrie Edwards

HumanForest and BetterHelp offer people access to the tools they need to support their wellbeing, albeit in different ways. Both HumanForest and BetterHelp share a belief that to be truly impactful, these tools need to be accessible, affordable and convenient for the end users.

BetterHelp has 32,000 therapists on their unique platform, ensuring that there is a wide range of support on offer. The company’s technology allows people to message a professional therapist anytime, anywhere. Its accessibility, convenience and affordability has enabled 4 million people to connect with a therapist and facilitated over 300 million therapy sessions and messages!

Similarly, HumanForest’s innovative adtech backed business model allows people to ride for ten minutes free every day. The company’s average ride cost is approximately 35-40% less than other shared eBike providers, making it significantly more financially accessible. Moreover, the shared eBike model is a convenient way for Londoners to avoid the hassle and practicalities associated with private bike ownership such as parking, maintenance and theft. In total, HumanForest has facilitated 670,00 hours of riding across our beautiful capital city!

In line with BetterHelp’s approach to making mental wellbeing an ongoing (rather than a one-off) consideration, HumanForest also believes that small incremental daily changes can have a huge impact on wellness. Cognitive function and wellbeing have been proven to increase from simply being outside in the environment, whilst endorphins from light exercise reduce anxiety and increase happiness levels. In a study, 32% of shared bike users said they choose to use the schemes for mental health benefits.

BetterHelp will be sponsoring HumanForest users’ free daily ten minutes of riding with advertisements for their therapy platform. Following recent tech developments by HumanForest, BetterHelp will also be using the company’s innovative adtech function called the ‘Minute Builder’, to reward users who engage with a short BetterHelp video with additional free minutes of riding with HumanForest.

Charlie Pepperell, Head of Partnerships at HumanForest, said: “All of us at HumanForest believe strongly that products and services that help us lead happier, healthier lives need to be affordable and accessible. It’s therefore so exciting to welcome BetterHelp to our roster of partners, who offer such an important service, particularly as we head towards Mental Health Awareness Week in the UK. 1 in 4 adults in the UK will suffer from a mental health issue every year. This partnership will not only provide our riders an immediate way to enjoy the health benefits that come with switching to active travel, but help to encourage and normalise access to talking therapy amongst our rider community in London.”

– ENDS –

About HumanForest

HumanForest is London’s most affordable and environmentally sustainable micro-mobility platform. Founded by Agustin Guilisasti, ex-Cabify alongside co-founders, Caroline Seton and Michael Stewart, HumanForest has completed almost two million rides and saved 250 tonnes of CO2 being emitted into London’s air since the ride sharing App launched in October 2021. HumanForest’s operations are zero emission and it is one of just two micro-mobility companies globally to have B Corp accreditation.

About BetterHelp

BetterHelp is the world’s largest professional online therapy platform, providing online mental health services directly to consumers. The online counselling and therapy services are provided through web-based interaction as well as phone and text communication. Since 2013, BetterHelp has enabled over 4 Million people to connect with a therapist.

Media enquiries

For further information, please contact:

Laura Elms
HumanForest Laura.Elms@humanforest.co.uk

The Routing Company announces MOU with Emirates Transport

The Routing Company announces MOU with Emirates Transport

The Routing Company has announced that it has signed a memorandum of understanding with Emirates Transport to develop on-demand transit in the United Arab Emirates. 

The signing will mark TRC’s second in the UAE and follows TRC’s announcement of an agreement with the UAE’s Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure in February 2023.  

The MOU creates a joint strategic cooperation agreement to further smart mobility solutions, directing ET and TRC to develop and innovate shared demand responsive transportation services within the UAE.  

“As the leading and largest transport operator in the UAE, we recognize that the current transportation models merely capture the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the current and future potential of this market,” said Zain Peracha, Head of Digital Ventures, Emirates Transport. “We expect radical innovation across the industry in this decade and are excited to crack strategic partnerships that will enable us to stand true on our values of best-in-class service and customer satisfaction, as well as our deep commitment to develop operational efficiencies and further electrification within our fleet.”  

The MOU’s intended outcome is to launch at least one pilot service in the region within 2023 to effectively evaluate performance, mutual fit, and future areas of focus.  

These include improving customer satisfaction and convenience, illustrating high capacity ride sharing safely in the UAE, improving operational efficiency, and more. In addition to the MOEI opportunity, there is a core focus on capturing the nascent potential of B2B demand-responsive deployments within the region. 

“Through this agreement, TRC will work closely with Emirates Transport to advance smart mobility solutions – including collaboration on the study, development, and deployment of on-demand transportation services in the UAE,” said James Cox, Chief Executive Officer, TRC. “With a population nearing 10 million that continues to grow at a record pace, the Emirates is in need of more efficient, safe, affordable, and convenient ways to move people. Our partnership with ET aims to achieve just this: sustainable movement at scale.” 

TRC will leverage its full suite of Pingo products – including features such as Pingo Campus™ and Pingo Journey™ – to provide enhanced mobility services with ET, namely operating on-demand and shuttle pilots. TRC’s Pingo Campus™ feature is ideal for shuttle operation, allowing riders to track available shuttles in a specified area in real time, while utilizing Pingo Journey™ to find other public transit options and plan onward multimodal transit journeys.  

Full press release: The Routing Company

City of Chicago announces $54M in grants for 133 small businesses and community organizations

City of Chicago announces $54M in grants for 133 small businesses and community organizations

Press Release

Today Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot named 133 Chicago small businesses, not-for-profits, cooperatives, and environmental organizations as finalists for more than $54M in City grants.

The finalists were selected from over 670 applications received by the Department of Planning and Development (DPD) in early 2023 and represent the largest single round of economic development grant-making in Chicago history. Award amounts range from $10,000 to $5.9M. Collectively, the finalists announced today promote business revitalization, job creation, and neighborhood transformation through the estimated $253M in construction and development they will generate.   

“I am immensely proud of the investments that the City has made in small businesses and nonprofits throughout my administration,” said Mayor Lightfoot. “By issuing these development grants to budding entrepreneurs and organizations who provide essential services and opportunities, we are making an investment in the vitality of our communities. These individuals and organizations do the hard work to make our neighborhoods safer, healthier, and more prosperous and these grants highlight the City’s commitment to supporting them.”   

Lightfoot added: “I want these grants to set a new standard for the role City government can play in supporting small businesses to revitalize commercial corridors, fund climate resilience, build community-wealth and spur transit-oriented development. I hope each and every one of the organizations and communities benefiting from these grants will go on to thrive and remember what we have been able to accomplish together when City Hall listens and responds to the voices from every Chicago neighborhood, not just a select few.”   

Details on all grant recipients announced today are here for CRP and here for NOF. An interactive map of today’s finalists and those announced in previous funding rounds can be found can be found here 

Today’s grant announcement includes funding for new, innovative City initiatives, including technical assistance programs to help make City grants accessible to a broader and more diverse range of organizations 

Finalists will receive funds through nine separate City programs that were combined into streamlined universal application processes. Six of the programs are Chicago Recovery Plan (CRP) grant streams: Community Development Grants (CDG) small and large grants, Climate Infrastructure Fund (CIF) grants, Equitable Transit Oriented Development (ETOD) pre-development and development grants, and Community Wealth Building (CWB) grants. Finalists announced today also include applicants receiving funding though Tax Increment Financing (TIF) and the Neighborhood Opportunity Fund (NOF) small and large grants.  

This latest round of grants takes the Lightfoot administration’s total direct economic development grant-making in communities to over $250M.   

Today’s announcement includes the fourth funding round for Chicago Recovery Plan grants since the first round was announced on May 2, 2022. Pairing City-issued bonds with American Rescue Plan funds from the Biden Administration, the CRP supports an equity-based investment strategy leading to sustainable economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.  

“The scale of this investment is completely unprecedented. With the 133 finalists announced today, we’re taking the total number of direct economic development grants made under this administration to over 530 projects, representing more than $250 million in grants,” said Deputy Mayor Samir Mayekar. “Collectively, these grants are unlocking more than $750 million in total development based on the overall cost of these projects. Those are funds going directly into neighborhoods, not just supporting an equitable economic recovery but helping to build thriving, safe, and sustainable communities for the long-term.”  

The latest round of grants shows the successful evolution of the City of Chicago’s strategy to mobilize businesses, not-for-profits, philanthropy, and government to leverage local talent and capacities to uplift communities.  

“Each of today’s grants represent an investment in people,” DPD Commissioner Maurice Cox said. “The recipients are partnership builders and trust builders who are giving everything of themselves to lift up the communities they love while making the city more equitable and resilient for all Chicagoans.”  

Grant funding will be provided as reimbursements for eligible costs based on the grant category. Most grants will involve building rehabilitation work, new construction, and energy efficiency upgrades. Total project costs for capital work under the grants are estimated at $253M.     

133 finalists will receive grants across nine programs, coordinated as one cohort of economic development grant recipients. The next round of grant applications is open until August 18, 2023.    

Today, 30 CDG finalists were announced, representing a total of $27M in grant funding. The program prioritizes catalytic projects with a strong local impact that leverage local talents, capacities, and institutions to strengthen and contribute to the community. They are open to community developers, business owners and entrepreneurs, and property owners. Residential-only developments are not eligible to receive CDG funding, but individuals and teams seeking to initiate mixed-use developments projects are encouraged to apply. Examples of CDG finalists announced today include Deeply Rooted Dance Theater’s South Side Center for Black Dance in Greater Grand Crossing and Cleo’s Southern Cuisine in Grand Boulevard.    

A total of 32 finalists were announced in the CIF category and will collectively receive $6.2M in funding. Climate Infrastructure Fund grants support neighborhood projects that mitigate the effects of climate change and accelerate the city’s equitable transition to the green economy. Finalists were selected based on multiple eligibility factors and alignment with the following three sub-categories: Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Systems, Electric Vehicles (EV) and EV Charging Infrastructure, and Green Infrastructure. Projects selected include The Firehouse, Plant Chicago to renovate a 115-year-old former firehouse into a community hub for the circular economy and Safer Foundation EV Fleet Project, allowing an East Garfield Park reentry program to replace its fleet with clean vehicles.   

“The Climate Infrastructure Fund represents a landmark moment for the City of Chicago,” said Angela Tovar, Chief Sustainability Officer for the City of Chicago. “We now have funding in place for nonprofit organizations and small businesses to help realize the goals laid out in the 2022 Climate Action Plan. We are incredibly excited to seed community-level climate infrastructure and for the sustainability leadership these finalists will provide for the whole city.”   

In the ETOD category, 26 finalists were announced, totaling $4.7M in grants. Equitable Transit Oriented Development grants support projects that create intentional community benefits, build more walkable, affordable neighborhoods and increase transit ridership. Equitable Transit Oriented Development grantees help reduce traffic congestion and greenhouse gas emissions, promote housing stability and economic vitality, and improve public health. Finalists announced in the ETOD category include Abrams Intergenerational Village providing affordable housing to seniors caring for their grandchildren, and housing insecure youth, and Food Matters providing healthy food options in a transit accessible location off the Green Line in Bronzeville.    

In the CWB category, 27 finalists were selected to receive a total of $3.8M in grant funding. Community Wealth Building grants are used to refine cooperative and shared-ownership development proposals through technical and design assistance. Priority models for CWB grants include worker cooperatives, limited-equity housing cooperatives, community land trusts, and community investment vehicles. Finalists announced today include Corner Store Co-Op at the National Public Housing Museum, cooperatively owned by current and former public housing residents, and Turning Red Lines Green, a community land trust that will include a community kitchen.    

In addition to the CRP programs listed above, 17 finalists were announced for NOF grants. The NOF program offers two types of grants, Small Projects (awards up to $250k) and Large Projects ($250k to $2.5M). Today, 16 Small Projects grants were announced for a total of almost $4M in funding, and one Large Project will receive $2M.    

Press release written by City of Chicago

FF’s Generative AI Product Stack will offer the first ever Generative AI capability

FF’s Generative AI Product Stack will offer the first ever Generative AI capability

Faraday Future Intelligent Electric Inc has announced the launch of FF’s Generative AI Product Stack, which will be integrated in the Company’s flagship vehicle, the FF 91.FF is one of the first automotive manufacturers to integrate and demonstrate generative AI capabilities in a vehicle. 

This Generative AI Product Stack will allow the company to integrate its foundational AI capabilities with advanced models such as ChatGPT, GPT-4, and others from companies such as OpenAI and Microsoft. 

“While there have been many advancements in AI over the years, recent developments in generative AI have broadened access to the benefits of AI. What used to take a lot of time, manpower and specialized skill, can now be done in minutes. This is having a transformative impact on society and inspiring people to be more creative, build new things and solve new problems,” said Prashant Gulati, Head of Corporate Strategy at Faraday Future. 

With this Generative AI Product Stack, the Company has the potential to scale to additional advanced generative AI models, giving extraordinary abilities to users. 

“We have been investing in software, AI, and human machine interaction for a long time and that places us in a unique position to utilize these advances in AI. To use generative AI in a car, you need a powerful computing platform, robust operating system, internet connectivity, and suitable displays. Only the FF 91 has such an industry-leading computing platform, advanced operating system, ultra-high-speed internet connectivity, AI and natural language processing ability, with over 100 inches of displays, and a Generative AI Product Stack that will empower users to gradually utilize advanced generative models for a range of personalized applications in the vehicle – from complex text and voice queries, to image and video generation, stock analysis, live translations, search, entertainment, education, ecommerce, and more. The possibilities are limitless,” added Gulati. 

FF is aiming to take a significant step toward transforming the future of mobility. As users gain access to limitless possibilities, the car becomes an evolving, intelligent, and interactive companion, setting a new benchmark in automotive innovation, stated the release. The Company is excited to be at the forefront of this transformation and looks forward to sharing more information in the near future. 

Full press release: Faraday Future


Uber partners with Stripe to enhance payments performance

Uber partners with Stripe to enhance payments performance

Stripe has formed a global partnership with Uber Technologies. The release states that Uber will significantly expand its use of Stripe’s payments platform, including in the US, to reduce costs and give customers more flexible ways to pay for Uber Rides and Uber Eats.  

As one of the world’s most sophisticated platforms, operating in 70 countries and accepting 52 different payment methods, Uber is always working on the future of payments—allowing customers to pay with their preferred payment methods without compromising on performance or reliability, all while reducing cost. 

“Creating payments experiences that combine payments innovation, reduced friction, and cost savings is at the core of what we do. Using Link to give customers the option to easily pay with their bank accounts puts us in a position to tick all those boxes while providing access to an increasingly popular mode of payment,” said Karl Hébert, vice president of payments, risk, and identity at Uber. “Stripe shares our commitment to reliability, customer centricity, and continued innovation—which is why they are a key partner.” 

It has been reported that Uber will use Link and Stripe Financial Connections to allow customers to securely and instantly add bank accounts without leaving the Uber app. Saved bank details can then be easily reused by customers for future purchases with Uber.  

“Uber has been a pioneer in payments since the very beginning. Who doesn’t remember the magical moment hopping out of their first Uber ride without touching their wallet?” said Will Gaybrick, president of product and business at Stripe. “Uber remains at the forefront of online payments today. As they look to provide ever more flexibility to their customers, we’re honored to do our part to help, and we’re thrilled to be along for the ride.”

Press release: Stripe

Venti Technologies grows operations leadership team

Venti Technologies grows operations leadership team

BOSTON & SINGAPORE – Venti Technologies, a world leader in autonomous logistics for global supply chain and industrial hubs, today announced the appointment of Dave Friedman as Chief Operating Officer and Foo Sing Ho as Vice President of Operations and Safety.

Following its recent Series A funding round in March, Venti Technologies has expanded its leadership team to help scale its full-scope autonomous vehicle solutions and meet customer demand for the automation of logistics and industrial hubs.

“The heart and soul of Venti Technologies is our team. I am pleased to have Dave and Foo Sing on board to accelerate our global growth,” said Heidi Wyle, Venti Technologies Founder and CEO. “The expansion of our leadership team and successful close of our A-round position Venti to lead the development of autonomy for safer and more efficient supply chains and logistics hubs.”

Friedman joined Venti in 2020 as a Board member and acting Chief Financial Officer. As COO, he leads the company’s commercial functions, including sales, business development, and finance. He is also responsible for the day-to-day management of the Singapore office. Friedman has over 25 years of technology leadership, including as Co-founder and CEO of Ayla Networks. He holds an MBA from the University of Michigan and a BA from Colgate University.

“I am honored to take on the role of COO at Venti Technologies and continue my journey with this exceptional team that has already achieved so much in advancing transportation,” said Friedman. “Venti’s dedication to cutting-edge technology and innovation is inspiring. I am excited to contribute to the development of autonomous vehicle solutions that will create a safer, more efficient, and sustainable future for all.”

Ho joins Venti Technologies after 40 years of leadership in the military and private sector, including a 35-year career in the Singapore Air Force where he served as a colonel and base commander. As Vice President of Operations and Safety, Ho leads the operationalization of Venti’s autonomous systems for customers, training, and remote operations. He also leads the company’s safety function. Before joining Venti, he served as Director and Head of the Circle Line at SMRT Corporation. Ho has an MA in Strategic Studies from Deakin University and a Management degree from the Royal Australian Air Force College.

“Autonomous vehicles are revolutionizing goods transportation making it safer, more efficient, and accessible for all,” said Ho. “I am grateful to be working with Venti’s incredible technology alongside talented colleagues. Venti is changing the world and I am excited to be part of it.”

About Venti Technologies

Venti Technologies is a world leader in autonomous logistics for the global supply chain and industrial hubs: ports, airports, warehouses, factories, and depots. Founded in 2018 by a team with strong roots at MIT, the company is pioneering the future of transportation for moving goods. Its highly flexible and industrial-grade precision technology enables rapid deployment and best-in-class safety and operational efficiency for customers. For more information, please visit www.ventitechnologies.com.

Cabify promotes electrification of collaborative drivers and taxis via Tesla

Cabify promotes electrification of collaborative drivers and taxis via Tesla

  • Cabify’s collaborative drivers, whether self-employed drivers or taxi drivers, who purchase a Tesla vehicle will receive a free home or garage charger courtesy of Cabify.
  • The Wall Connector charger is compatible with Model S, Model 3, Model X, and Model Y, and is capable of delivering up to 71 km of range per hour of charging.
  • Electrified vehicles that collaborate with Cabify can access exclusive categories, such as ‘Cabify Eco’, and increase their revenue.

Madrid, May 4, 2023. The multi-mobility platform Cabify and the US electric car company Tesla have signed an agreement to promote the electrification of collaborative drivers in Spain. Self-employed drivers and taxi drivers who collaborate with Cabify will receive the Tesla Wall Connector charger for free when purchasing a Tesla vehicle, courtesy of Cabify. The goal is to boost the decarbonization of Cabify’s collaborative drivers, providing them with access to zero-emission vehicles at the best prices and the necessary infrastructure to operate them.

The Tesla Wall Connector delivered by Cabify makes charging the vehicle directly at home or in the garage quick and convenient by accommodating most home electrical systems, with customizable power levels across a wide range of grid connections and amperage ratings. It is compatible with Model S, Model 3, Model X, and Model Y and is capable of delivering up to 71km of range per hour of charging, with up to 11.5kW / 32 amps of power depending on the model. This allows installation in most homes and garages, as well as workplaces.

This commercial agreement is part of Cabify’s Sustainable Business Strategy, which seeks to promote electric mobility through agreements with manufacturers and the promotion of the use of this type of vehicle by private and corporate users.

Model Y’s price currently starts from €37,820 + VAT while Model 3 is priced under €32,860 + VAT.

Exclusive categories for electrified vehicles

Cabify has the ‘Cabify Eco’ category, which offers users only electrified vehicles (electric, plug-in hybrids, and hybrids), leaving out cars with higher emissions. This category is available to all those companies that move with ‘Cabify for Business’ in Madrid, Barcelona, Seville, Valencia, and Alicante and is already the category most used by companies traveling with Cabify.

The ‘Cabify Eco’ category has a significantly higher average ticket than the standard category of private users, as the corporate user tends to make longer journeys and, on many occasions, in those time slots with less mobility in the city, which are also the hours with lower turnover volumes for drivers.

Funding to accelerate and boost sustainable mobility

Cabify has recently announced that it has raised $110 million in funding, a portion of which will be used to achieve its Sustainable Business Strategy. This capital raising includes the granting of a €40 million loan from the EIB to boost Cabify’s commitment to sustainable mobility and decarbonization of its collaborating fleets. The company’s objectives are to ensure that 100% of the rides made via the platform are in decarbonized fleets by 2025 in Spain and five years later, in 2030, in Latin America.

New Invers Mobility Barometer finding: 50,000 vehicles in free-floating car sharing across Europe

New Invers Mobility Barometer finding: 50,000 vehicles in free-floating car sharing across Europe

The new edition of the Invers Mobility Barometer provides a comprehensive overview of the European free-floating carsharing market for the first time. In free-floating carsharing or flexible carsharing, fleet operators offer their vehicles within a defined business area, where users can find available vehicles via smartphone and end the rental at any suitable parking space within the business area.

For the current barometer, the research team scrutinized public data from more than 90 carsharing operators in 29 countries, summarized relevant market studies and interviewed selected international experts.

“It was only with the widespread use of smartphones that free-floating carsharing gained momentum as a business model and then established itself in many European countries at varying speeds,” explains Enrico Howe, Senior Market Researcher at Invers. “In 2008, Daimler launched Car2Go, the first major service in Germany, followed in 2011 by BMW’s DriveNow, another pioneer. In Milan, the first service launched in 2013 and in Poland not until 2016.”

The current Mobility Barometer compiles data and trends in Europe comprehensively for the first time.

1. Strong market concentration: 70 percent of the European free-floating fleet is in five countries

By far the largest European market for free-floating carsharing is Germany, with 18,500 vehicles in 34 cities. In the overall European picture, this means that more than a third of the European free-floating carsharing fleet is on German roads. Gunnar Nehrke, executive director of the Bundesverband CarSharing and author of an annual Germany-wide carsharing study, attributes this to the testing strategy of car manufacturers. “I do not think that Germany is a special place for free-floating carsharing. I think the strong position of free-floating carsharing in Germany is more related to the fact that car manufacturers tested this carsharing business model here before expanding to other countries.Poland, with about 5,500 cars, and Italy, with 5,400 cars, each accounting for about 10 percent of Europe’s free-floating fleet, come in second and third, respectively, according to national association studies. Spain is fourth with about 3,500 to 4,000 cars, and France is fifth with about 2,300 vehicles. Other large free-floating fleets are found in Austria, Belgium, Hungary, the Netherlands and the UK. In countries such as Ireland, Switzerland and Norway, on the other hand, there are currently no free-floating carsharing services offered.

2. Dynamic market characterized by acquisitions and the quest for profitability

In the still relatively young market, the most important goal for many operators is to become profitable. This is evident in almost all the expert interviews in the Mobility Barometer. In addition, the market has seen a lot of momentum recently, particularly through acquisitions. At the end of 2021, GreenMobility acquired Dutch provider Fetch Mobility. Stellantisintegrated Share Now into its own Free2move brand in 2022. In November 2022, Milesacquired the WeShare free-floating fleet from Volkswagen and is now the largest carsharing provider in Germany.

3. The boundaries between business models are becoming increasingly fluid: operators are using vehicles flexibly in sharing, subscription models, or traditional rentals

Another clear trend is the combination of different business models: free-floating operator MILES, for example, also offers car subscriptions, while Share Now in Münster has added station-based car sharing as a supplement to its core free-floating business. In Germany, some providers of station-based car sharing took the opposite approach by integrating free-floating. These include cambio, stadtmobil, teilAuto, and book-n-drive. One example of multimodal service expansion is Bolt.Drive. The ridesharing and kick scooter sharing provider expanded into car sharing in 2021. Sixt Share, on the other hand, uses synergies with the traditional rental business for its car-sharing offering.

4. Car sharing drives e-mobility: small and medium-sized operators are often 100 percent electric

In Germany, for example, more than 20 percent of the total carsharing fleet is comprised of e-cars, while only 3.3 percent of the total number of vehicles registered in Germany are electric. In addition, numerous operators have e-vehicles exclusively in their fleets, such as GreenMobility in Denmark, Belgium, the Netherlands and Finland, Aimo Share in Sweden, Voltio in Spain, e-GO! DRIVALIA in Italy or Eloop in Austria. “When it comes to sustainability, we can point to the growth of the share of electric vehicles in Italian car sharing,” says Luca Refrigeri, data analyst for the Italian association Osservatorio Nazionale della sharing mobility. “The share was back above 25 percent in 2021. In addition, the number of micro-cars in fleets has increased significantly.” In Hamburg, car-sharing companies Miles, ShareNow, Sixt and WeShare have agreed to increase the share of electric vehicles in their fleets to at least 80 percent by the turn of 2023/24.

5. Data-based and AI-based solutions optimize business processes and offer new application possibilities.

On the road to profitability, operators are increasingly turning to detailed vehicle data and innovative technologies. For example, AI-driven, real-time damage detection solutions can significantly optimize damage management processes and reduce revenue losses by up to 10 percent.

The Invers Mobility Barometer Vol 2 “European Free-Floating Carsharing” can be found here.

About Invers

Invers, inventor of automated vehicle sharing, enables mobility service providers to launch, operate and scale their offerings with integrated hardware and software solutions specifically designed for developers of shared mobility services. As the world’s first shared mobility technology company, Invers is developing and reliably maintaining the fundamental building blocks at scale to offer its customers cost-efficient and easily implementable tech solutions.

The company acts as an independent and reliable partner for operators of services such as car sharing, car subscription, moped sharing, ride pooling and car rental services with the visionto make the use of shared vehicles more convenient and affordable than ownership. Customers include Share Now, Clevershuttle, Miles, imove, Carify, Getaround and Flinkster. The company was founded in 1993 and has locations in Siegen, Cologne and Vancouver. The development takes place entirely in Germany. www.invers.com

Evoy and Hurtigruten Expeditions launch first electric high-power tender boats for expedition cruises

Evoy and Hurtigruten Expeditions launch first electric high-power tender boats for expedition cruises

Evoy, the leading manufacturer of maritime electric motor systems, today announced a collaboration with Norwegian adventure travel operator Hurtigruten Expeditions, to electrify the first ‘ship to shore’ and wildlife-spotting tender boats. The tenders, custom-built for Hurtigruten’s expedition cruising, are the first of its kind with sufficient range to deliver excursions in some of the most remote places in the world.

Announced by Hurtigruten Group as part of their 2022 annual Environmental Social and Governance Report (ESG) released yesterday, the new innovative tender boats are designed for excursions from expedition ships in Arctic and Antarctic waters, and in all regions in-between the poles.

The electric tenders can carry up to 20 guests, along with scientific & safety-related equipment, for use on landings and carefully planned day-trips that enable guests to experience destinations in an intimate and sustainable way.

“We are very proud to be the first commercial expedition cruise fleet to offer this ground-breaking technology enabling silent and emission-free excursions with minimal disturbance to local wildlife. It is an innovation collaboration based on our aligned commitment to safety and sustainability,” said Iain McNeill, SVP Operations, Hurtigruten Expeditions.

Evoy sets the industry standard with its pioneering inboard and outboard electric motor systems, offering unparalleled flexibility, ease of use, and power output. As battery technology continues to advance, Evoy’s motors are becoming increasingly efficient, enabling boats to sail longer distances with ease.

“We are excited to partner with Hurtigruten Expeditions on their path to Net Zero,” said Leif A. Stavøstrand, CEO Evoy, adding, “we both share a fundamental respect for nature and a strong commitment to protecting our oceans through ensuring emissions don’t make it into the atmosphere.”

Hurtigruten Expeditions will introduce the first electric tender boats on expedition cruises with MS Otto Sverdrup along the Norwegian coast this season.


More about Evoy:
The shift to electric boating is happening now, powered by EVOY.

EVOY design, develop, and deliver powerful 100% electric motor systems (outboard and inboard), for fast and powerful boats between 20 and 50 ft, bringing the superiority of electric leisure and commercial boating into new markets with ground-breaking technology.

NIO and NXP enter new partnership on 4D Imaging Radar Deployment

NIO and NXP enter new partnership on 4D Imaging Radar Deployment

NXP Semiconductors has announced that NIO will leverage NSP’s leading automotive radar technology, including its ground-breaking imaging radar solution. NXP’s latest 4D imaging radar solution is a powerful technology that allows benefits far beyond traditional radar.  

This hopes to enable a significant improvement in front radar performance in today’s vehicles. The cars will be able to detect and classify objects such as other vehicles and vulnerable road users in high-way and complex urban scenarios and at distances of up to 300m, bringing more safety to the roads and driving comfort for end users. 

NXP’s imaging radar technology expands radar’s capabilities from measuring range and speed, to include direction, angle of arrival, and elevation measurement. Fine-resolution point clouds enhance environmental mapping and scene understanding, enabling the detection and classification of objects beyond the range of human eyesight while measuring the objects’ velocity under almost all weather and light conditions. Technology is a key step in improving road safety and saving lives, it allows the car to ‘see’ a motorcycle driving close to a large delivery truck or a child entering a roadway between parked cars. 

“NIO is committed to providing users with a vehicle experience that exceeds expectations. Carmakers developing high-level, assisted intelligent driving experiences is a key element of that,” said Kevin Pan, Assistant Vice President of NIO Supply Chain Development. “Together with NXP, we’ll be able to take the next step toward improving driver experiences.” 

NXP’s imaging radar solutions are the ideal choice for advanced, high-performance front radar applications. Being part of NXP’s full range of radar products, they offer seamless performance scalability as well as software and hardware design reuse across radar platforms. The combined radar processor and transceiver chipsets deliver efficient advanced radar processing with high-performance RF technology, enabling Level 2+ and higher autonomous driving services. 

“NXP’s imaging radar technology offers high-resolution object and feature detection for precisely mapping the car’s surroundings, enabling carmakers to deliver improved ADAS and autonomous driving features,” stated Torsten Lehmann, EVP and GM, Radio Frequency Processing, NXP. “NIO’s decision to adopt NXP 4D imaging radar technology is a testament to its differentiating performance and efficiency.” 

Press release by NXP

SDG INVESTMENTS arranges growth-financing for HumanForest

SDG INVESTMENTS arranges growth-financing for HumanForest

SDG INVESTMENTS acted as sole financial adviser to HumanForest, a fast-growing e-bike start-up headquartered in London, in an asset-based transaction to fund the expansion of HumanForest’s fleet of electric bicycles. The debt financing has been provided by a leading investor in sustainable banking.

The proceeds from the transaction will enable HumanForest to double the size of its London fleet to meet growing demand for its services. HumanForest secured licences to operate in Lambeth, Merton, Southwark, and Wandsworth since the beginning of the year, increasing its operational area to more than 10 London Boroughs. HumanForest also renewed its licence to operate in the City of London.

E-Bike sharing start-up HumanForest aims to make micromobility accessible, affordable, and sustainable in urban areas utilising its advertising-technology platform to reduce the cost of rides for the end user. Insights from HumanForest’s operations platform analyses of usage behaviour help optimizing the allocation of e-bike to ensure a high availability.

SDG INVESTMENTS managed and executed all phases of the investment process, including deal structuring as well as engagement and negotiation with institutional investors. This successful transaction demonstrates SDG INVESTMENTS’ high level of expertise in the field of micro mobility, extensive sustainable investor network and client recognition of the cooperation and services provided.

Stefan Bund, Partner SDG INVESTMENTS, emphasises: “It was a pleasure to support HumanForest on this important transaction. As SDG INVESTMENTS we are proud to be a trusted partner in evolving this sustainable and efficient mode of transportation in the United Kingdom.”

Agustín Guilisasti, Founder and CEO of HumanForest, said: “Today’s debt announcement is part of a wider equity fundraising round that provides firepower to grow our presence in London and further develop our advertising technology and operations platforms. The debt funding has allowed us to double the size of the fleet in London, helping us to achieve our goal to make sustainable and affordable transport accessible to everyone. SDG INVESTMENTS, as our sole financial advisor for the debt transaction, were instrumental in this process – their expertise and deep understanding of micro mobility businesses has been invaluable in helping us achieve our goals and grow HumanForest.”

The funding contributes to the achievement of several United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, namely SDG 3: Good Health and Well-Being, SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities and SDG 13: Climate Action.


SDG INVESTMENTS makes the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) investable. As a corporate finance boutique for sustainable finance, SDG INVESTMENTS structures and distributes certified sustainable investments in various solutions and vehicles. In addition, SDG INVESTMENTS® offers the first online matching platform for financing and investment products that are aligned with the SDGs: http://www.sdg-investments.com

About HumanForest:

HumanForest e-bikes operate a unique advertising-led revenue model, whereby consumers receive an advert from partners before and after using a HumanForest e-bike. This allows customers to ride for free for 10 minutes each day and costs £0.15 per minute thereafter. It is the first micro-mobility company to develop this innovative business model, which connects users with associated partners in a sustainable way, with the technological architecture created in-house.


Contact SDG INVESTMENTS: Dr Stefan Bund, +49 69 2475 196810, stefan.bund@sdg-investments.com

Press release from SDG INVESTMENTS


Citroën reveals details of the New C3 Aircross

Citroën reveals details of the New C3 Aircross

Citroën has revealed details of the New C3 Aircross, a family B-SUV that offers Citroën’s comfort and well-being signature, plus versatility for up to seven people.

The vehicle is created with regional input to meet the specific needs of customers in key markets of India, South-East Asia and South America, this new SUV model and the already launched compact New C3 represents key steps in Citroën’s international growth strategy, under which the brand is targeting 30 per cent of its global vehicle sales to be in regions and markets outside of Europe by 2025.

New C3 Aircross is the second in a family of three new models specifically aimed at international growth markets under Citroën’s C-Cubed programme which was announced in 2019. The new B-SUV is developed and produced locally at the Thiruvallur plant in India and in Porto Real, Brazil, with a 90% level of content integration, ensuring customers’ satisfaction through an offer perfectly matched to their needs, faster parts availability and overall lower cost of ownership, states the release.

New C3 Aircross is a tough and distinctive SUV available in both five-seat and seven-seat versions and targeted for launch in India and South America from late 2023. From 2024, it will also be launched in Indonesia, a new market for Citroën, announced in October 2022 and operated in partnership with Indomobil Group as the sole distributor.

In India, the B-SUV segment is divided into two, based on the taxes applied to vehicle length. Sales of models longer than 4m increased by 32% in 2022 compared to 2021, reaching 366,432 units. It accounts for nearly 9.9% of the passenger vehicle market which represents about 4 million units sold annually. Along with the growth in the number of drivers over recent years, the number of vehicles offered in the B-SUV subsegment also increased, making it extremely competitive.

Citroën’s arrival in Indonesia as the brand that “Dares to Care” is timely, and the seven-seat New C3 Aircross B-SUV will appeal to professionals and their families seeking a vehicle that makes the daily work commute, weekend outings and adventures to enjoy their hobbies both easy and stress-free.

Laurence Hansen, Citroën Product and Strategy Director said, “Listening to the voices of so many potential customers in these markets drove us to make sure New C3 Aircross offers families a unique package they will appreciate, combining distinctive signature Citroën brand design markers with pure SUV attributes in a muscular and eye-catching vehicle that represents great value. It fully embraces our 360-degree approach to comfort and well-being for everyone through outstanding roominess, modular versatility and space to carry up to five or seven people in serenity. It comes with high levels of equipment and technology, including for seamless connectivity on the move, and the family can make their vehicle even more personal with an extensive offer of themed packs and accessories made-to-measure for each market.”

New C3 Aircross is a 4.32m long family B-SUV with a tough, expressive design that inspires confidence. It features an assertive front face with a high bonnet, wide track width, Citroën Y-shaped lighting signature and powerful double grille with lower skid plate to deal with varying road conditions and maximise cooling. In silhouette, it stands out with among the best 200mm ground clearance, muscular wheel arches with large wheels and tyres, and resilient protective claddings.

The wide C-pillar adds verticality and strength to the body, while neat rear quarter windows add to the feeling of light and space for passengers. Windows and long rear doors enhance the feeling of height, light and visibility, and allow easy access to the rear rows of seats.

To enhance their pride of ownership, customers in each region can also personalise their vehicle by choosing from a wide range of themed packs and accessories tailor-made to market expectations and designed to stand out and add character. Additionally, Citroën’s signature contrasting roof colours create an eye-catching dual-tone effect for owners who want to add extra distinctiveness to their vehicles.

Citroën’s passion to ensure drivers and occupants enjoy unrivalled safety and onboard comfort is evident in every detail of New C3 Aircross; the spacious cabin offers tuned suspension which maximises comfort and minimises body roll in demanding traffic conditions and over varying road surfaces. Citroën-tuned steering and turning circle for enhanced agility and easy manoeuvring in dense urban traffic complement this. Even the underbody structure and approach angles have been engineered to ensure that New C3 Aircross can tackle rough, crumbling road surfaces with ease and climb up or down steep slopes without touching them.

New C3 Aircross is particularly roomy. The five-seat version offers one of the best kneeroom for rear seat passengers and up to 482-litres of luggage volume, while the seven-seat version adds intelligent modularity for multiple uses, with a third row of two individual seats. These can be folded down or removed individually when the family needs to balance room for passengers with up to 511-litrescapacity for luggage or materials.

Supremely comfortable seats combine with a powerful climate and air-conditioning system, particularly in the second and third rows of the seven-seat version thanks to a unique ventilation module mounted into the roof panel. Thoughtful storage solutions throughout include cup holders that double as smartphone holders and up to five USB plugs.

Up front, the eye-catching and layered horizontal instrument panel features a unique soft-touch grain across the middle. On higher trim levels, New C3 Aircross comes with a seven-inch TFT cluster and a 10-inch touchscreen – among the largest in this class – sits centrally and provides access to key infotainment and connected services – including mirroring capability for access to apps using Apple CarPlay™ or Android Auto.

Press release written by Stellantis.