Elmo, an Estonian company that introduced remotely controlled electric cars in a car-sharing service, has raised €2.6 million from the international growth capital fund and other investors including Highgoal Capital Management, FlyCap, Barolo Invest, and SAGGIS.
The funding will help Elmo speed up the licensing of remote control technology in foreign markets, grow the team, develop next-generation technologies, and prepare new eco-sustainable remotely controlled cars to take them to public roads.
The global urban mobility market is changing due to shifting consumer preferences and technological advances. Governments are reducing private car ownership in urban areas, and consumers seek sustainability, convenience, and affordability. Car ownership is declining in favour of public transport, bicycles, car-sharing clubs, and ride-hailing.
Enn Laansoo Jr., the founder and CEO of Elmo, said, “Although Elmo’s greatest competitive edge has so far been the development of the technology as well as the provision of a short-term rental service in one company, we will now be able to conclude the separation of the technology and the short-term rental business into subsidiaries in order to bring aboard new investors with a more specific focus.”
Making remote controlled cars legal
Last year, Elmo became the world’s first deep-tech company to bring its road legal remotely controlled cars and drivers licensed by the Transport Administration into a real-life car-sharing service. The company has driven and introduced remotely controlled cars to customers in the streets of Paris, Munich, Hannover, Zurich, Vienna, Helsinki, Los Angeles, and many other cities.
Elmo has ongoing negotiations with more than 50 customers interested in the licensed technology, and preliminary work is in process to start driving on the public roads of at least two foreign cities this summer.
“We are happy to contribute to an Estonian technology company such as Elmo which is one of the first in the world to put remote control technology-based services into daily practical use. We see remote control technologies and the related services as a necessary step in bringing fully autonomous driving technologies into our daily life in the future,” said Ragnar Meitern, head of the lead investor’s representative Highgoal Capital Management.
Elmo was founded by Enn Laansoo Jr, and offers solutions in two areas: short-term car rental and remote EVs. In Estonia, the company offers ecologically efficient car-sharing services and 4G remote-controlled vehicles. With their short-term rental technology, Elmo provides clients with quick and seamless car delivery to their doorsteps.
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