From Data Driven to Driving Data – Helping to Build the First Connected Car Data Marketplace

By Lisa Joy Rosner, CMO, Otonomo

I don’t know a throw-out bearing from an alternator, but I do know data. I’ve been a marketing executive for many years and I’ve seen data drive amazing things – saving money, increasing sales, delighting even the most disgruntled customer – but now, I am seeing data save lives.

For the past couple of decades, I’ve been lucky enough to work in Silicon Valley – the heart of where major technology disruptions are born. I’ve seen the rise of dozens, if not hundreds, of new innovations and trends, and I’ve had the opportunity to pick new challenges for myself out of a nearly limitless set of companies changing the world. One thread which has woven the fabric of my career together is my firm belief that data and analytics are the foundation upon which great companies are built. I’ve lead marketing for companies from data warehousing, to e-commerce personalization, social media analytics, ad-tech, to DDoS mitigation, all of which were great at bringing together and leveraging a core of big, interesting data.

For my next career challenge, it was important to find something where the gathering and use of data at massive scale was going to not just transform a big industry, but create real change and help individual people improve their lives. What I never would have guessed is that my quest would lead me to work in the automotive sector. Seriously, I drive an old minivan.

I’ve been interested in the Internet of Things (IoT) world since my time as CMO of Neustar, where we started an IoT practice and I was fascinated by all of the “things” that are now being increasingly connected. One of the areas where these types of interconnections are really starting to take off is in the automotive industry. In just the very recent past, cars were rolling islands, isolated unto themselves, operating independently and disconnected from the Internet as a whole. Those days are coming to a close as car manufacturers move away from solely being hardware businesses, into selling software on wheels, which engage with the Internet in real time, capturing data about themselves and the world around them, and transforming how we think about transportation. This means new business models, new thinking and new capabilities.

Ford Motor Company projects that by 2020 their vehicles will contain 100 million lines of code. Compare that to the original space shuttle, which was able to breach the bounds of space and return back home on a mere 500 thousand lines of code. We’ve just scratched the surface of what’s possible and new innovations in electric (EV) and autonomous (AV) vehicles will only continue to push the limits of how we perceive mobility and transportation, all while producing more data than we can imagine today.

According to Gartner, by 2021, 98 percent of new cars sold in the U.S. and Europe will be connected; and IBM predicts that each car will send 25 gigabytes of data per hour to the cloud. It’s this world where we are undergoing a rapid change from disconnected islands to interconnected networks, where I decided to seek out my next career challenge and where I found otonomo.

otonomo is building the first marketplace for connected car data. As more cars become connected, there is a need to aggregate and normalize this vast, diverse amount of data and then make it easily accessible. This central repository of data opens the door to new uses for the information, and provides more opportunities to help consumers – and even save lives. This is the part that excites me the most. The connected car, with automatic crash detection, can provide first responders with critical information, including the force of the impact, how many people are in the car, if they were wearing seatbelts, if the car rolled over, and if so, how many times. All of this can improve time of response and improve care. In an accident every second matters, and otonomo helps make this data available instantly.

The future for connected car data goes well beyond the hopefully rare instances where you have an accident. Enabling accessible connected car data can improve how quickly you find a parking space, identify road hazards, help engineers build better smart cities, reduce emissions or help you get better insurance rates.

The team at otonomo (based in Israel, not far from where I once lived) is full of energy, passion and critical thinking. CEO and Founder, Ben Volkow, a serial entrepreneur (this is his fourth start-up), has a vision that is truly inspiring. I learn something new from him and the team every day. Our investors are top tier, including Bessemer Venture Partners, Aptiv (Delphi Automotive), Dell Technologies Capital, Hearst Ventures, Stageone Ventures, and Maniv Mobility; and the partners on our board are seasoned and extremely helpful. I am so excited to help grow both the supply and demand side of the marketplace globally, as well as the potential of driving data and the journey ahead of us.

 

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