" /> Route-finding AI specialist Continuum Industries raises £1.5m — Edinburgh Innovations
Continuum Industries, which provides AI tools to rapidly design linear infrastructure projects such as routes for roads, railways and powerlines, has raised £1.5 million in seed funding.

The company, co-founded by Edinburgh Innovations clients, says the funding will enable it to make its technology widely available to planning and design teams around the world.

The funding round was co-led by Playfair Capital and Credo Ventures, with participation from Techstart Ventures, Simon Blakey, Michael Blakey and others.

Automated design

Founded in Edinburgh in 2018 with initial backing from Skyscanner co-founder Gareth Williams, Continuum Industries has created the CI Engine, which allows its users to automate their existing engineering design process and use AI, like a co-pilot, to explore millions of design options in rich detail. 

The CI Engine enables infrastructure planning and design teams to cut the time spent on early-stage design work via automation of design processes and decisions that traditionally happen in spreadsheets and emails. The initial stages of the design process can be cut from months to a matter of days. 

The company says the CI Engine can reduce construction and operational costs of large infrastructure projects by as much as 15%, and can help planners and designers contribute to worldwide economic recovery post-Covid-19.

Bespoke EI support

Continuum Industries emerged from the founders’ involvement in HYPED, a 150-strong student-led society at the University of Edinburgh that built the UK’s first hyperloop prototype vehicle and successfully competed in contests run by SpaceX and Virgin Hyperloop One.

The Continuum founders received support from EI during the HYPED project, including a bespoke bootcamp to help explore the possibilities for a spinoff company. The team were hosted at the time by EI at the Appleton Tower Enterprise Hub in Edinburgh.

It was the hyperloop moonshot that made us realise the socio-economic value of infrastructure and forced us to think about better ways of taking infrastructure projects from ideas to reality.”

 

– Grzegorz Marecki, co-founder and CEO, Continuum Industries

 

Continuum Industries CEO Grzegorz Marecki says productivity of the construction industry has not increased in the past 30 years. 

“As we fight to reduce our environmental impact and meet the needs of a growing population, we can’t keep relying on decades-old methods that are no longer fit for purpose,” says Marecki.

“Continuum Industries brings an AI-powered alternative to help the construction industry increase its productivity and meet the demand.”

‘Genuine game-changer’

Chris Smith, Managing Partner at Playfair Capital, who joined the company’s board of directors, said: “From the first message the team sent me on LinkedIn, we have been impressed with the depth and breadth of expertise they have in the infrastructure and construction space, matched with a burning passion to change the way we plan and build critical infrastructure projects.”

“Even at this relatively early stage, the technology Continuum Industries has built is a genuine game-changer, enabling significant time and cost savings for all parties involved in designing and constructing linear infrastructure projects. 

“With signed customers across Europe and a growing global pipeline of interest we are excited to be onboard to support the team through the next phase of growth.”

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