21st May 2019

Change at the Top: Preparing the World for Universal Autonomy

By Dr Graeme Smith, Founding CEO, Oxbotica

For the past five years, I’ve had the best job in the world. Being CEO at Oxbotica has been my dream job, as we’ve built the company from a start-up through to one of the world’s leading autonomous driving software companies. These first five years of my life at Oxbotica have been about getting Oxbotica ready to face the world. As we near commercial deployment, my next few years will be about getting the outside world ready for Oxbotica. Effective immediately, I’m going to be stepping into a new role at Oxbotica as Senior Vice President of External Affairs. In parallel, we are announcing that I’m handing over the captaincy to Ozgur Tohumcu who will be taking over as Oxbotica’s new CEO.

I’m proud of what Oxbotica has achieved during my time as CEO and of the amazing team that we’ve built. Since our founding, our focus has been on perfecting our technology for real-world application and growing our team. Today, we stand strong at as one of the world’s pre-eminent autonomy software companies. Now exceeding 120 employees, we are a force to be reckoned with. We have our software running in three continents so far, and we have validated our approach in many domains from public roads to grass tracks and mines.

As we approach deployment with our partners across multiple domains, we encounter a broader challenge that goes far beyond our own organisation. As SVP of External Affairs, I will be working to accelerate the implementation and application of Oxbotica’s technology, working with our partners and with government bodies worldwide to accelerate the deployment of universal autonomy, as well as managing all compliance, regulatory and IP matters.

It’s definitely unusual for an outgoing Founding CEO to stay within the same company. But this is how we roll at Oxbotica – constantly evolving and adapting, striving to become the best version of ourselves. I’m quite happy to be still on the pitch with my favourite team, playing in a different position, and to hand the captaincy over to new leadership talent that will accelerate Oxbotica on the next stage of our journey towards the commercialisation of our software. Ozgur is a hugely experienced leader and I’m looking forward to working with him as we continue our drive towards Oxbotica becoming the de-facto universal autonomy provider.