(Q) Can you share with us a little about ARCHIVE AUTO’s “secret sauce” and why it is important now in the global market? (BC): Automotive fraud, on a global scale, is the single largest sector of insurance fraud globally literally costing hundreds of billions of dollars a year and growing. Vehicle fraud is a $100B a year problem in the U.S. alone. Actually, nobody knows just how much vehicle fraud exists today when you consider all areas of fraud such as tampering with automotive odometers, repairs, maintenance, parts, and all aspects of the vehicle from the date of manufacture to its retirement. Reason for all the fraud is very simple, there are real flaws in the businesses today that provide vehicle identity and history. Most businesses today that provide vehicle identity and history were established in an analog world where the make-up of a vehicle was less then 10% digital. Today more than 70% of every vehicle is digital and by 2025, that climbs to well over 80%. Very simply, ARCHIVE AUTO has applied a patented digital solution to an old world analog flaw.
ARCHIVE AUTO has created the only patented digital control unit computer that is introduced in the vehicle’s Controller Area Network (CAN). CAN is a global ISO standard. Very simply the patented ARCHIVE AUTO solution does not allow for the identity, odometer, or vehicle history to be tampered with or modified once it has been recorded into the system upon creation. ARCHIVE AUTO developed the platform with simplicity in mind providing a visualized solution literally in the palm of one’s hand. In a global industry with ever growing, wide reaching dependencies on recorded identity and data ARCHIVE AUTO built a proprietary automated “background” data synchronization platform between the vehicle and the cloud. Naturally, this results in deep and rich data layers that can be utilized and sifted in a myriad of ways by all the players in the vehicle industry from the manufacturer-to-insurance company-to-repair shop-to-state governments. (Q) This is not the first event data recorder (EDR) in the automotive market, what makes ARCHIVE unique in this crowded space? (BC): The inventors of ARCHIVE AUTO are naturally well aware of how EDRs have been implemented in the past, and knew they would need that “secret sauce” to set them apart. However, one has to keep in mind that a majority of the EDR solutions over the past 25 years were developed as analog solutions for the broad automotive industry. From its establishment the inventors of ARCHIVE AUTO focused on a digital EDR solution specifically supplying the real time data and analytics desired by the global automotive insurance industry. Naturally, ARCHIVE AUTO’s “secret sauce” is confidential but it is a platform that is technologically integrated with the entire automotive ecosystem while keeping in mind the real time data and analytical needs of the global automotive banking and insurance industries. ARCHIVE AUTO introduces a verified, heavily regulated document history to cross check all information.
(Q) Will, why have you invested in ARCHIVE AUTO? (WS): I established my first venture capital fund, Asia Pacific Ventures (APV), back in 1995 and so I have been a venture capitalist for a little over (22) years. Different then many VC’s, I have an international operating background in technology having started my career working at the headquarters of NEC Corporation (NEC) in Tokyo, Japan. NEC, at the time, manufactured over 100,000 digital products from semiconductors-to-mainframe computers-to-orbital satellites so I am fairly grounded in technology and its many attributes. As well, given my Japanese background, I have had long business relationships with Toyota, Honda, Mazda, Fuji Heavy (Subaru), and many others in the global automotive industry. Actually, Toyota was an investor in one of my early APV venture capital funds. Hence, I have great respect and interest investing in cutting edge digital technology opportunities in the global vehicle market. ARCHIVE AUTO is a patented cutting edge digital technology and data opportunity in the global vehicle market. As a General Partner at Rogers Venture Partners (RVP), we were an early venture investor in Automatic, in the connected vehicle space, which was acquired in 2017 by Sirius XM for $115M. https://techcrunch.com/2017/04/27/siriusxm-acquires-connected-carcompany-automatic-for-over-100m/. Given my professional venture experience I know firsthand it doesn’t happen very often and probably one in every couple hundred investment opportunities that an entrepreneur walk’s thru the front door that has a very simple, unique, elegant, patented, “global” solution. Everyone who knows me understands I have a very simple investment philosophy as an early stage technology venture capitalist. It is all about the people. People are the most valuable asset in every company. I invest in brilliant, talented, capable people who can execute on new global solutions. Frankly, ideas are cheap, however, global solutions are extremely valuable only if the talented people behind the solution can execute. ARCHIVE AUTO is the only patented data platform in the global vehicle market today that has a lock on identity, odometer, and history of every vehicle. Globally, I have yet to find an automotive insurance company that wasn’t interested in lifting the hood, no pun intended, on ARCHIVE AUTO.
(Q) Can you share with us a little further about a vehicle’s identity in ARCHIVE AUTO’s block chain developments? (WS): If there is one global industry where block chain will have a major impact is in the automotive space. Since the advent of cars, the automotive industry has always embraced technological advances, but the pace of digital change has accelerated so rapidly that auto original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) worldwide are struggling to keep up. It is not just connected cars, or even autonomous cars that manufacturers are racing to [safely] bring to market; it is not just 5G connectivity shifting narratives around smart city interactions or in-car experiences; it is not just car-sharing and new business models with which they are experimenting; and it is not just artificial intelligence (AI) or computer vision for which they are recruiting talent. Automotive manufacturers are now facing another potentially transformational technology: Block chain I have been fortunate enough to be both an investor (with RVP) and board member in two major global block chain companies. I am on the board of PokitDok (www.pokitdok.com), developing DokChain with partners like Intel in the identity healthcare space and RVP was a major early stage investor in SecureKey, (www.securekey.com), in partnership with IBM and major global banks in the identity financial technology space. Anyone involved in block chain knows it starts and ends with identity and ARCHIVE AUTO owns the identity and history of the vehicle.
(Q) Can you elaborate further about ARCHIVE AUTO’s plans? (BC): We are currently working on the second stage of development to add a more holistic, seamless implementation of the data capture and storage technology. The strategy is to then add the levels of complexity and security needed to handle such sensitive information. This is of major concern to all involved, especially with the current revelations of major corporations being less than diligent with regards to privacy and handling of sensitive information – it is a crucial element of ARCHIVE AUTO’s service. To reinforce what Will has stated previously this is where Block chain could be transformative in the automotive space. In parallel with the development of the technology is the opportunity to structure relationships with strategic industrial partners to implement and realize the benefits of what this breakthrough technology can bring across the board, from manufacturer to insurance to repair facility. We believe ARCHIVE AUTO’s technology will be in 85% of the vehicles on the road within next 5~7 years.
(Q): You mention automotive OEM’s, Banks, and Insurance Companies, how will they all play in ARCHIVE AUTO’s plans? (WS): ARCHIVE AUTO is a technological solution in the global vehicle marketplace, however, it is equally, if not more, of a FinTech or InsureTech data and analytics company. Think about the hundreds of billions that global banks lend or insurance companies insure for vehicle’s with fraudulent odometer’s and parts. As we touched upon earlier in this interview, automotive insurance fraud is the single largest sector of insurance fraud globally literally costing hundreds of billions of dollars a year and unfortunately growing. In a global industry with ever growing wide reaching dependencies on recorded identity and data ARCHIVE AUTO has built a proprietary automated “background” data synchronization platform between the vehicle and the cloud. Naturally, this results in deep and rich data layers that can be utilized and sifted in a myriad of ways by banks and Insurance companies on a global basis. Most importantly, ARCHIVE AUTO understands it is not just about data but quality of data. Mitigation against risks in bank lending, auto insurance, and fraud is all about the data and the global banks and insurance companies are embracing these new data and analytical opportunities. ARCHIVE AUTO would like nothing better than to assist all the global automotive banking and insurance companies in finally having a firm grip on that real time automotive risk adjustment dial. It’s not been often in my VC career where I have come into a venture investment opportunity in a start-up like ARCHIVE AUTO where the technology platform is completed, piloted, patented, and already in strategic global OEM and Insurance partnership discussions.