Toll road operator and developer Transurban has invested US$4 million into location services technology start-up Bluedot Innovation.
The ASX-listed road infrastructure giant, which has a vast network of 13 roads across Australia, led the Series A funding round into the Melbourne-based start-up, which raised US$5.5 million.
Bluedot claims its location technology is 20 times more precise than its rivals, allowing users to pinpoint customers within just a few metres. It does this while safeguarding battery usage, privacy and safety on customers’ phones, it says.
The start-up – which has raised US$13 million in total funding since it was founded in Adelaide in 2012 – also offers a product called Geoline which establishes ‘virtual tripwires’ to trigger mobile content or notifications.
The start-up has worked with Transurban for some time, in November launching LinktGO, a mobile tolling app that leverages a smartphone’s GPS and other sensors to identify when a driver has entered and exited a toll road.
The app is aimed at the 50 per cent of toll-road users who typically use Transurban roadsfewer than four times a yearand wouldn’t buy an e-tag to see their toll travel in real time and pay trip-by-trip using their smartphones, with no ongoing commitment.
“Partnering with Bluedot has enabled the delivery of our innovative smartphone app, which is helping our customers easily manage their use of our roads while building in safeguards to promote road safety,” said Transurban’s general manager of customer experience, Chris Jackson.
“Our strategic investment in Bluedot ensures we’re well placed to use location services technology to deliver new products for our customers that makes travelling with us a seamless experience.”
Bluedot said it would use the funding boost to double it’s team at its San Francisco and Melbourne corporate headquarters, and for research and development projects to expand its platform and transform mobile-based location services internationally.
“We have, and will continue to deliver, unprecedented IP and technology that enables enterprises to interact with their customers in meaningful andpersonalized ways at scale,” says Bluedot’s co-founder, Emil Davityan.
“The solutions we can power were not possible before. We’re enabling enterprises to put customer experience at the center of their business, and to seamlessly transition between physical and digital.”
As well as Transurban, enterprises leveraging Bluedot’s technology includeSalesforce,News Corp and Cox Automotive.
In March last year, Bluedot received a AU$200,000 slice of theFederal Government’s Entrepreneurs’ Program, for the commercialisation of its Bluedot Point with mobile commerce platforms and marketing clouds.