TIER acquires Fantasmo to further expand the world’s most accurate e-scooter parking system and introduce a computer vision-powered rider assistance system
March 31, 2022
- TIER continues to invest in tackling challenges like irresponsible parking, sidewalk riding and tandem riding, which will help to create a safer environment for all road users.
- TIER has been privately testing Fantasmo's upcoming computer vision-powered rider assistance system.
- This is the fourth acquisition TIER has made in recent months.
Thursday 31st March, Berlin – TIER Mobility, the world’s leading shared micro-mobility provider, announced today it has acquired Fantasmo. With this move, TIER continues to invest in and develop the world’s most accurate e-scooter parking system, which will help to bring order to city streets and protect vulnerable road users. This purchase marks another important step in tackling challenges like sidewalk riding and tandem riding with Fantasmo's upcoming computer vision-powered rider assistance system and further ensuring TIER e-scooters set the standard for city compliance. US-based Fantasmo has already earned a world-class reputation with its Camera Positioning System (CPS), a new positioning technology that is ten times more accurate than GPS and can validate e-scooter parking within 20cm or less.
TIER and Fantasmo have established a strong relationship in the last 12 months, with the next-generation mapping company Fantasmo successfully supporting TIER’s efforts to eliminate irresponsible parking, resolving a major concern for city authorities and pedestrians, in particular people with visual impairment. The company rolled out Fantasmo's CPS first in Paris and later in other locations across TIER’s network of 185+ cities throughout Europe and the Middle East, including London, York, Dusseldorf and Leipzig.
TIER is committed to setting the bar high for safety and orderly operations in the micro-mobility industry and is continuously pioneering the development of new standards. In Paris, for example, TIER managed to improve parking compliance using Fantasmo's 3D mapping, which has been in use since Spring 2021, and is so far the only provider with a proven technology-based solution to tackle irresponsible parking.
Matthias Laug, CTO and co-founder of TIER, said: “The acquisition of Fantasmo is a major step forward in our continuous investment in innovative features and technologies that will help to make e-scooters more compliant and safer for all road users. From the very beginning we’ve been hugely impressed by Fantasmo’s Camera Positioning System, which allows us to directly address the concerns of vulnerable road users when it comes to how e-scooters are parked. Our plan is to expand the positioning technology to numerous cities in Europe and the Middle East in the near future and at the same time invest in the upcoming computer vision-powered rider assistance system.”
Jameson Detweiler, President and co-founder of Fantasmo, said: “We have been working with TIER closely for over a year, and have experienced firsthand their commitment to be the best micro-mobility platform for cities, citizens and riders. We are excited to continue on this journey together as we continue to expand our CPS powered parking validation technology and into the future by bringing that technology and advanced rider assistance systems directly onto vehicles. We are confident that with TIER’s operational and vehicle experience and Fantasmo’s computer vision technology, we can ensure micro-mobility vehicles, pedestrians and everyone else will be able to exist together harmoniously.”
Future plans - computer vision-based driver assistance technology
In the near future, micro-mobility provider TIER plans to introduce a new computer vision-based driver assistance technology that - paired with the new IoT - can detect traffic violations and collisions as well as reckless riding on the scooter. Riders who do not follow the rules and regulations will be alerted to their offenses and may even be fined or banned. The new technology is currently being tested privately and will be rolled out in cities around the world in the coming months.
The new feature, which aims to solve the most pressing problem of micro-mobility in all cities, is enabled by CPS technology and allows for high positional accuracy and centimeter-level mapping. Unlike other solutions that use GPS tracking, Fantasmo's unique technology provides an extremely accurate representation of vehicle location, even in dense urban environments where the GPS signal does not work reliably. Paired with the vision sensor, TIER's new IoT platform will create the most advanced ARAS system to date.
Fantasmo builds 3D maps of cities by foot, walking, for example, over 2,500 km of Paris streets with its camera. Because Fantasmo maps cities at the ground level, its positioning technology is considerably more accurate than satellite-based GPS. As with TIER’s previous parking system, any user attempting to park in a no-go area, or outside of a designated parking bay, will not be able to end a ride. The feature requires no additional parking infrastructure from cities - only a completed 3D mapping of the city in question.
The amount of the purchase price and further financial details of the transaction will not be disclosed. Adding to its current workforce of more than 1,200 employees, TIER will retain all 15 of Fantasmo's highly skilled experts in Europe and in the US. The acquisition is the latest significant move for TIER, following the purchases of micro-mobility operator Spin, Europe's top bikeshare player nextbike, the Italian subsidiary of Wind Mobility, as well as Hungarian tech agency Makery. In October last year, TIER announced the closing of its US$200 million Series D funding round. To date, TIER has raised a total of $660 million in equity and debt.
ABOUT TIER Mobility
TIER Mobility is Europe's leading shared micro-mobility provider, with a mission to Change Mobility for Good. By providing people with a range of shared, light electric vehicles, from e-scooters to e-bikes and e-mopeds, powered by a proprietary Energy Network, TIER helps cities reduce their dependence on cars. Founded in 2018 by Lawrence Leuschner, Matthias Laug and Julian Blessin, TIER is headquartered in Berlin and currently operates in 250+ cities across 22 countries in Europe and the Middle East. With a focus on providing the safest, most equitable and most sustainable mobility solution, TIER has been climate neutral since 2020.
TIER’s investors include SoftBank Vision Fund 2, Mubadala Capital, Northzone, Goodwater Capital and White Star Capital. For more information, visit www.tier.app.