Divergent Technologies, the company that has developed the world’s first end-to-end digital production system to revolutionize industrial-scale manufacturing, completed its Series C funding totaling $160 million. The new financing round will enable the company to industrialize its fully-integrated platform, combining generative design, additive manufacturing, and automated assembly, expand operations, and meet the growing demand among automotive OEMs for the design and production of vehicle structures leveraging the company’s proprietary digital production technology. Along with the new capital, Divergent is welcoming John L. Thornton, former President of Goldman Sachs, Executive Chairman of Barrick Gold, and Board Member of Ford Motor Company, to its Board of Directors.
Divergent Technologies seeks to make the vehicle manufacturing process more efficient and less wasteful using additive manufacturing (AM), colloquially known as 3D printing. Through the company’s state-of-the-art Divergent Adaptive Production System (DAPS), Divergent replaces the conventional structure design and production process, which is reliant on legacy software, vehicle architectures, tooling and related factory assets with a proprietary, patented, end-to-end system for vehicle design and engineering, volume manufacturing and assembly. The DAPS software-hardware stack was developed in-house, with over 500 patent filings across the system. This approach enables both low- and high-volume manufacturing without the costly tooling and capital expenses of the past, enabling manufacturers to quickly iterate and invent new product models from anywhere in the world.
With lead inventor, founder and CEO Kevin Czinger, Divergent has a team of more than 180 engineers and scientists across four technology divisions: Structures, Software (HPC, GD and AI), Additive Manufacturing (Hardware, Software and Materials) and Automation (Software, Optics and Robotics).
“This funding represents a sterling affirmation of how disruptive we are in the auto manufacturing industry, one that really hasn’t experienced such revolution since Henry Ford developed the assembly line more than 100 years ago,” said Czinger. “Of great importance, given the global focus on sustainability, DAPS is planet-saving manufacturing in that it radically reduces lifecycle environmental impact by optimizing total vehicle “cradle-to-cradle” efficiency.
Added Lukas Czinger, Senior Vice President of Operations, “DAPS creates radically more efficient structures using a fraction of the typical engineering time and transforms automotive companies from CapEx-constrained businesses to flexible, design-driven organizations. It is the first instance of digital industrial manufacturing. The factory infrastructure stays consistent regardless of the design, only the data changes, allowing DAPS to switch between differentiated designs seamlessly with no downtime in-between. DAPS entering serial production this year represents a historic inflection point in automotive manufacturing.”
Seeing Divergent in action is seeing the future of automotive manufacturing now. This system will become the norm in the industry. The transformation in manufacturing which Divergent will lead will be good for the US, good for jobs, good for efficiency, for productivity and for climate.”John L. Thornton, former President of Goldman Sachs, now on Divergent’s Board of Directors
Tom Steyer, both an early and a Series C Divergent investor, added: “By greatly reducing the carbon emissions and the industrial footprint of automotive manufacturing, Divergent is one of the companies I’m most hopeful will have an important impact on our ability to combat climate change. Zero-Emissions Vehicles are an important part of a greener future, but if we can’t reduce the environmental costs of building them in the first place, their impact will never be fully realized. Divergent’s technology can change that.”
David Beirne, one of the original five GP’s of Benchmark Capital and a Board Member of Divergent, said: “The long-term potential for Divergent’s digital manufacturing technology is revolutionary across multiple industries, not just automotive. Its proprietary DAPS system is so adaptable that you could build just about anything efficiently without requiring massive capital investment and a large industrial footprint. Divergent is a game-changer for American manufacturing.”
The unique capabilities delivered by the system are highlighted in the industry-disrupting performance of the Czinger Vehicles 21C hypercar, the first production car designed and built using Divergent’s ground-breaking technology. Over the past few months, the hypercar shattered the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) production car track lap record by an astonishing six seconds and the Laguna Seca production car track lap record by two seconds. Of significance, the 21C V8 was designed to use a range of fuels, including carbon recycled methanol and other e-fuels, so it can be run as a zero-emissions vehicle.
Divergent plans a scale-up of its advanced manufacturing facilities, with future deployments of DAPS factories planned for Europe and the USA starting in 2024. Divergent is currently in development with 8 initial OEM brands on vehicle structure programs with production volumes ranging from 100s to hundreds of thousands of vehicles across the models’ production life, with the first program entering production this year. Divergent’s ultimate vision is to build a global network of DAPS factories driving distributed innovation across the planet in a circular economy manufacturing system.
In previous funding rounds, Divergent Technologies raised roughly $200 million from investors including Horizons Ventures and Altran Technologies, bringing the total so far to well over $300 million.