Shield AI raises another $60M at a $2.3B valuation for its military autonomous flying tech

Shield AI raises another $60M at a $2.3B valuation for its military autonomous flying tech

Investors continue to pay attention to defense technology, and today, one the largest startups in this space announced more funding. Shield AI, which designs platforms and planes for autonomous flight systems and targets the U.S. military as its customers, has raised $60 million in funding. This money will be used to develop its technology.

The additional Shield AI Series E money will bring the total round to $225 millions. The previous announcement by Shield AI was $165 Million The startup was valued at $2.3 billion by the tranche it received in June. We confirmed with Brandon Tseng (the president of Shield AI), that the extension was at the same valuation. He co-founded Shield AI with Ryan (the CEO).

The US Innovative Technology Fund (USIT) was the sole investor in this latest $60 million. Although the company closed the additional funding one week after the previous round was announced, it is only now announcing it. Tseng did not comment on the delayed announcement, but USIT was also involved in Anduril’s big defense deal. Round: $1.5 billionIt is also long-rumored that it was. Also Only announced this month. Previous investors in Shield AI include Riot Ventures and Snowpoint Ventures.

This news comes at a difficult time for fundraising: investors have tightened the purse strings in response to tech companies, from top down, experiencing a slowdown in business. Startups that find it difficult to raise funds have had to reduce costs and show their backers that their business ideas will grow and be profitable. Even if they do all this, they may still run out and have to close down.

Despite all this, defense tech is still a standout category in tech. The sector has been the subject of controversy for many reasons. Some VCs As a matter policy, do not invest in defense startup companies. There are ethical questions about whether you should endorse companies that build tech for military aggression. There are also ethical questions about surveillance technology that some of these companies create.

Yet, some of these sentiments are being shifted by world events and the wider economy. Technology is a key factor in the current tensions between nations, terrorists, and wars. This means that those fighting in combat need better tools. As tech continues to flood with bad deals, those looking for higher ground see a chance in defense tech. PitchBook Not noted In October, defense startup investing was expected to surpass $7 billion (last year it was $7.6 million).

Tseng said in an interview that “Military spending and government spending are countercyclical.” Talk to a consumer or an enterprise business and you will see that spending falls in a recession. The government is a Steady Eddie. Modernizing the military requires a plan and a path. The government will continue to implement that plan.”

Like many others, Shield AI likes to spin that its tech can reduce casualties or injuries.

Tseng stated in a separate statement that there is increased interest from investors because the United States and its allies are best positioned for deterring global conflict when their aircraft can provide the best and highest critical information and access. “The greatest victory does not require war. This is why investments in deterrence technology such as AI pilots for defense are so important.”

All of this is what drives business for the top startups in the space and that in turn attracts investors.

“Automated defense capabilities are going to play an increasing essential role in our defense programmes and are critical for our ability to stay competitive,” stated Thomas Tull, chairman of the US Innovative Technology Fund in a statement. “Shield AI is a pioneer in this space, utilizing some of the most innovative and cutting-edge technology available for AI piloting. We are proud that we can support Shield AI’s defense work.

Shield AI is located in San Diego, previously known as the Silicon Valley for the defense industry. It’s home port for the U.S. Pacific fleet and according to Stats gatheredAccording to the chamber of commerce of the city, San Diego receives more defense spending than any other area in the U.S. Shield, which is based there, along with dozens of smaller defense contractors.

The company already has a number of aircraft and its Hivemind autonomous flying program on the market. These aircraft are deployed with customers (for instance, in the F16 airplane pictured above). Shield AI is part of U.S. Department of Defense Program of Record. It’s currently working on a variety of projects including VTOL autonomous plane hardware and software, and “swarming”, capabilities to jam signals or help customers communicate when they are being jammed.

The $225 million Shield AI’s round is a clear indication of this demand and the high cost of developing technology for this sector. It comes 11 days after Anduril (another defense tech startup that works on autonomous systems), confirmed that it had received the round. Close to $1.5 billion raised At $7 billion in valuation, with the goal of putting that money into part to build its hardware and software.

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