Announcement of the agenda for the TechCrunch sessions: Mobility 2022 – TechCrunch

TC Sessions: Mobility is back, and this year we’re bringing together the best and brightest founders, investors, engineers, and experts on the future of transportation for a two-day in-person event May 18-19 in San Mateo , in California .

An online day will follow on May 20 to give our audience, including those who were unable to attend, a chance to connect online and catch highlights from the live event, network and watch the full sessions. We are delighted to announce that Herbert Diess, CEO of the Volkswagen Group, will discuss his vision for the future of mobility during this online part of the event.

TC Sessions: Mobility will feature speakers on the main stage, a host of startup exhibits, demos, networking, and a live pitch-off with a sweet prize. We’re excited to give a first look at some of the people – and vehicles – who will be on our main stage and what we plan to talk about.

Who will be on our stage? We’re glad you’re asked. Let’s start with two vehicles that have yet to make their public debut in person: an electric vehicle that Arrival is building for Uber and the custom-built Zoox robotaxi.

Other topics on our list for this year include exploring the opportunities and challenges for urban airlines and cities, the two paths companies are taking to commercialize autonomous vehicle technology, cybersecurity, micromobility, autonomous trucks and autonomous delivery.

Our guests include Aurora Co-Founder and Chief Product Officer Sterling Anderson, Motional CTO Laura Major, Nuro Co-Founder and CEO Jiajun Zhu, and Waymo Co-CEO Dmitri Dolgov . So there is Bonny Simi, who leads flight operations and personnel at Joby Aviation, and Rebecca Yeung, corporate vice president of FedEx, which is responsible for the company’s robotics and autonomous vehicle initiatives, as well as cybersecurity freaks Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek with Cruise.

Buy your General Admission or Starter Starter Demo Package today before the prices go up. We also recently added two new ways to attend the event; Expo pass only and online only ($75 and $45, respectively).

May 18

How to get seed funding

with Yoon Choi (Muirwoods Ventures), Mar Hershenson (Pear VC) and Gabriel Scheer (Elemental Excelerator)

Spoiler alert: Uber for X is no longer a differentiator. Mobility is not a nascent vertical, and industry startups seeking funding should consider this advantage. Investors don’t need to explain the opportunity of a company’s size in the transportation industry; instead, they want to see contrarian growth, whether it’s a new angle on old technology or profitability. TechCrunch brings together three venture capitalists – Yoon Choi of Muirwoods Ventures, Mar Hershenson of Pear VC and Gabriel Scheer of Elemental – to talk about their investing strategies, what’s hot and what’s not .

Transforming an audiovisual innovation into a product

with Oliver Cameron (Cruise) and Laura Major (Motional)

Autonomous vehicle technology has moved from the confines of academic research to living labs, that is, testing on closed tracks and public roads. Today, a handful of companies, including Cruise and Motional, are trying to turn their innovations into a product that not only has the technical ability to navigate city streets, but is accessible and easy for people to use. . Oliver Cameron, VP of Product at Cruise and former co-founder of Voyage, and Laura Major, CTO of Motional, will cover the technical and deployment challenges of creating a product that people can and will want to use.

Vehicle Spotlight: Zoox

with Jesse Levinson (Zoox)

Zoox first launched its bespoke robotaxi vehicle in December 2020 in a virtual event. Since then, this vehicle has been largely hidden, with testing taking place in areas away from the public. Now the Zoox vehicle is ready for an up-close and personal premiere at TC Sessions: Mobility. Zoox co-founder and CTO Jesse Levinson will discuss the vehicle, the company’s progress and where we might see Zoox next.

How to unlock benefits in micromobility
with Alex Nesic (Drover AI), Janelle Wang (Acton) and upcoming speaker

Despite the huge sums of venture capital invested in shared micromobility, the industry has yet to achieve a unit economy favorable enough to generate profits. But it’s getting closer. We’ll meet with Drover AI’s Alex Nesic, Acton’s Janelle Wang and another panelist to talk about new methods and technology being deployed to help micromobility companies turn a profit.

The world according to Waymo

with Dmitri Dolgov, co-CEO of Waymo

Waymo, the self-driving arm of Alphabet, has recently hit major milestones, from launching a robotaxi service in San Francisco to entering into partnerships with traditional logistics companies that will help it bring self-driving cargo to market. However, challenges remain on all sides – political, technological, commercial and social. Dmitri Dolgov, co-CEO of Waymo, was there from the start. As one of the founders of Google’s self-driving car project, which started in 2009 and became Waymo in 2016, he’ll tell us how far autonomy has come and how far it still has to go.

Introducing TechCrunch on Mobility

The industry’s brightest entrepreneurs will take the stage in front of a live audience and panel of industry experts, showcasing groundbreaking technologies. Founders – apply here.

How Urban Air fits into cities

with Gary Gysin (Wisk Aero), Cyrus Sigari (UP.Partners) and Bonny Simi (Joby Aviation)

What will it take to execute urban air mobility operations in cities? TechCrunch Mobility will sit down with Gary Gysin, President and CEO of Wisk Aero, Cyrus Sigari, Co-Founder and Managing Partner at UP.Partners, and Bonny Simi, Head of Flight Operations and People at Joby Aviation, to discuss both challenges and opportunities in the urban air mobility space and what it will take to not only launch in cities, but actually be useful to residents.

The road to commercialization of self-driving trucks

with Sterling Anderson (Aurora Innovation) and Rebecca Yeung (FedEx)

Aurora has been running a pilot program with FedEx to transport freight between Dallas and Houston via self-driving Paccar trucks since September 2021. As with most other self-driving freight pilots, human safety operators are present in the vehicles, but the goal Aurora is to operate its trucks fully autonomously by the end of next year. We’ll chat with Aurora Co-Founder Sterling Anderson and FedEx Head of Robotics and Autonomous Vehicle Technology Rebecca Yeung and discuss the driver’s progress and implications for the future of autonomous trucking.

May 19

How Your Startup Should Think About Collaboration, Not Just Capital

with John Du (GM Ventures), Taylor Ogan (Snow Bull Capital) and Trina Van Pelt (Intel Capital)

Capital markets have a knack for distracting even the most rambling founders. However, as we are beginning to see, a well-priced funding round is no substitute for a well-oiled operation. And startups should think more about strategic opportunities and collaborations when they give up those coveted spots. We bring together John Du from GM Ventures, Taylor Ogan from Snow Bull Capital, and Trina Van Pelt from Intel Capital to talk about partnerships in the mobility world, especially ones you probably don’t think of.

A contrarian view of large-scale autonomous deployment

with Austin Russell (Luminar)

Luminar founder and CEO Austin Russell has a different view of how to deploy autonomy at scale than other AV developers in the industry, as well as Tesla CEO Elon Musk. Lidar is central to Russell’s vision, but perhaps not in the way one might think. We’ll dig into Russell’s perspective and strategy on how to bring an autonomous vehicle to the masses at scale – without removing the human from the driver’s seat.

The new passenger economy

with Nils Wollny (Holoride)

In anticipation of a future where autonomy is the norm and passengers seek stimulating entertainment to break the monotony of a journey, Holoride offers an in-vehicle virtual reality system that turns every vehicle into a moving theme park. Only the Audi spin-off does not wait for complete autonomy to market its product and bring us into the new passenger economy. Holoride’s VR technology is coming to Audi cars this summer. We’ll sit down with Nils Wollny, co-founder and CEO of Holoride, to talk about the place of virtual reality, blockchain, NFTs and cryptocurrency in the automotive space.NEED TITLE

Securing the cars of today and the robotaxis of tomorrow

with Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek (Cruise)

A new era in connected cars has arrived, and with it comes new security risks. And then there are robotaxis and other autonomous vehicles. Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek, undisputed leaders in the cybersecurity industry, who both hold senior security roles at the GM Cruise-backed self-driving company, will join us to discuss the field. dynamic and rapidly evolving automotive cybersecurity.

Vehicle Spotlight: Arrival

with Avinash Rugoobur (Arrival)

Arrival last year announced plans to design and build an affordable, purpose-built electric vehicle for public transit in partnership with Uber. Before the vehicle goes into production in Q3 2023, Arrival will show it here at TC Sessions: Mobility. Arrival Chairman Avinash Rugoobur will talk about the design process and hopefully production of the vehicle, what the EV company is also working on, and what could be just around the corner.

Introducing TechCrunch on Mobility

The industry’s brightest entrepreneurs will take the stage in front of a live audience and panel of industry experts, showcasing groundbreaking technologies. Founders – apply here.

Where is my self-driving car?

with Yanbing Li (Aurora), Saswat Panigrahi (Waymo) and Sarah Tariq (Nvidia)

When it comes to moving people via autonomous vehicles, two paths are beginning to emerge: Robotaxi services and private vehicles with autonomous capabilities. Companies are moving towards the commercialization of robotaxis with the direct aim of total autonomy. Automakers, on the other hand, are today deploying personal vehicles that have lower levels of autonomy via advanced driver assistance systems, with the end goal of slowly improving until they can offer personal vehicles with higher levels of autonomous functionality. We’ll sit down with the AV experts to discuss the stumbling blocks of each approach and which one might be first at scale.

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