WayRay’s $80M Sequence C deck – TechCrunch


We have now fairly a singular pitch deck on our palms as we speak.

A couple of years in the past, AR automotive {hardware} firm WayRay raised $80 million at a half-a-billion valuation in a Sequence C spherical led by Porsche, and I’m tremendous excited to indicate off their pitch deck as we speak! Sure, it’s slightly bit older than among the decks we often tear down, however it’s uncommon that I get my palms on a 100% unedited, unabridged deck that resulted in a half-unicorn valuation.

WayRay’s deck consists of a whopping 75 slides — round 50 greater than I might usually suggest for a deck like this — and it’s clear that the founders took a special tack than what we’re used to seeing today. Nonetheless, you’ll be able to’t argue with a profitable fundraise of this caliber.


We’re on the lookout for extra distinctive pitch decks to tear down, so if you wish to submit your personal, right here’s how you are able to do that. 


Slides within the deck

Usually, I checklist all the slides in a deck right here so you will get an summary. However as I discussed above, this deck comprises 75 slides, and lots of of them aren’t significantly clear when it comes to what they’re truly for. Simply flicking by the deck leaves me actually confused usually, however I’ll get to why that’s a foul factor in a bit.

Let’s begin by outlining what’s within the deck, after which check out the way it all comes collectively, what works and what wants enchancment.

  1. Cowl slide
  2. “What makes us stand out” — USP slide
  3. Our Mission — Mission slide
  4. Graphic slide
  5. Previous investor slide
  6. “Management in holography” — Platform description slide
  7. Cowl slide — “Our Foremost Focus”
  8. “We imagine that the automotive windshield is probably the most pure medium for delivering AR content material.”
  9. Expertise layers — Tech stack
  10.   Expertise layers — Tech implementation
  11.   AR Market — Instance use case 1
  12.   AR Market — Instance use case 2
  13.   AR Market — Instance use case 3
  14.   AR Market — For the driving force
  15.   AR Market — For the passenger
  16.   Expertise benefits
  17.   “Benefits of WayRay’s AR HUD” product options slide
  18.   “Expertise comparability” — Examine head-up shows with rivals
  19.   “Expertise comparability” — Examine head-up shows with rivals
  20.   “For us, typical HUDs are not any competitors” — Positioning slide
  21.   “Deep Actuality Show” — Product overview slide
  22.   “Standard HUD” — Reveals what the competitors does
  23.   “Breakthrough in Quantity” — Reveals how WayRay HUDs take up a smaller footprint in automobiles
  24.   Cowl slide — “The place we are actually”
  25.   “We’re set as much as signal business contracts” — Traction slide
  26.   “True AR HUD: from the idea to commercialization” — Product roadmap slide
  27.   “When launched right into a car mannequin” — Explains “stickiness” of the product between mannequin years
  28.   Enterprise Mannequin slide
  29.   Cowl slide — “How we work”
  30.   Graphic slide: “Do Deep Tech”
  31.   Graphic slide: “Do Deep Tech”
  32.   “Vertical Integration” — Aggressive benefit slide
  33.   Graphic slide: “Holography”
  34.   Graphic slide: “Holography”
  35.   “Groundbreaking developments in holography” — Tech overview
  36.   Graphic slide: “Customized Lasers”
  37.   “PGU optical design” — Reveals how the HUD is designed
  38.   “Superior engineering strategies” — Reveals how the merchandise are designed
  39.   “AR Rendering Engine” — Product slide
  40.   “True AR SDK” — Third-party app developer slide
  41.   Cowl slide — “WayRay Overview”
  42.   WayRay Workforce — Workforce slide 1
  43.   WayRay Workforce — Workforce slide 2
  44.   WayRay Workforce — Workforce slide 3
  45.   WayRay Workforce — R&D departments org chart
  46.   WayRay Workforce — Chemistry staff slide
  47.   WayRay Workforce — Design staff slide
  48.   WayRay Workforce — Electronics Engineering staff slide
  49.   WayRay Workforce — {Hardware} Engineering staff slide
  50.   WayRay Workforce — Optics & Holography staff slide
  51.   WayRay Workforce — Platform Options staff slide
  52.   WayRay Workforce — High quality Assurance staff slide
  53.   WayRay Workforce — Software program Engineering slide
  54.   WayRay Workforce — Swiss Expertise Heart staff slide
  55.   WayRay Labs — Laser Lab slide
  56.   WayRay Labs — Holography Lab slide
  57.   WayRay Labs — Experimental manufacturing slide
  58.   WayRay Labs — PCB meeting facility slide
  59.   WayRay Labs — Take a look at lab slide
  60.   WayRay Labs — CNC workshop slide
  61.   WayRay Labs — Metrology gear slide
  62.   Cowl slide — “The place we’re headed”
  63.   New Markets/Radical Improvements — Positioning slide
  64.   Add-on holographic AR show — Future product slide
  65.   “Software throughout a number of industries” — Go-to-market brainstorm
  66.   Development Gear — Instance use case slide
  67.  “AR Aspect Window Options in trains” — Instance use case slide
  68.   “AR Aspect Window Options in Cabs” — Instance use case slide
  69.   “AR good glass” — Instance use case slide
  70.   Awards — Awards acquired slide
  71.   Occasions — CES 2017
  72.   Occasions — CES 2018
  73.   Occasions — CES Asia 2018
  74.   Media Protection slide
  75.   Thanks slide

Three issues to like

There’s lots of unbelievable stuff to get my tooth into with these many slides. To begin off, these slides have been designed terribly effectively.

WayRay operates within the OEM automotive house. In different phrases, for its merchandise to be seen out on the earth, they need to be examined and accepted by automotive producers, who then have so as to add the product to a future model of the automotive.

It’s a frightening prospect as a result of most of these offers can drag on endlessly. I’ve labored with startups which have needed to anticipate greater than a decade from their first conversations with a automotive producer till the tech turned out there in a automotive you should buy. It stands to purpose that such an endeavor is capital-intensive, however it additionally signifies that when you recover from sure hurdles, you’re on a fairly clear path to market.

There’s proof of each on this deck.

Tremendous clear street map

[Slide 26] The WayRay street map reveals its plans clearly. Picture Credit: WayRay (opens in a brand new window)

I liked the best way the corporate presents its plans and its milestones thus far in a very easy street map (pun supposed). The corporate attracts a transparent image of the place it’s and what it’s making an attempt to do.

I might have lots of questions on this timeline (a Q2 2022 RFQ to manufacturing in 2023 doesn’t appear lifelike in my expertise), however I do recognize the readability and the outlined targets the corporate has set.

One of many deepest moats I’ve seen shortly

[Slide 32] Vertical integration all the best way. Picture Credit: WayRay

I typically suggest younger corporations do solely what is completely core to their enterprise and outsource or use platforms for every little thing else. WayRay takes a special strategy — it has in-house personnel for each facet of its product improvement and manufacturing course of.

The corporate particularly lists Optics and Holography, {Hardware}, Software program and Electronics Engineering, High quality Assurance, Design and Chemistry. For some {hardware} corporations, I wouldn’t have anticipated anything, however on this case, it’s useful to spell out that WayRay is taking fairly a broad strategy. Each right here, and elsewhere within the deck, it turns into unwaveringly clear that the corporate has an actual curiosity in, and penchant for, analysis and improvement.

WayRay does a fantastic job at displaying off the world it needs to reside in.

Notably, the corporate doesn’t say if it has a military of IP attorneys ensuring that its belongings are protected. The truth is, the phrase “patent” doesn’t seem wherever within the pitch deck, which appears like an oversight.

Nonetheless, the corporate says: “The underlying mental property of our deep tech improvements is well-protected and exhausting to breed.” As an investor, I’d have liked to listen to a bit extra about what number of patents the corporate is producing, during which elements of the world and what number of patents have been accepted.

Portray an image of a really completely different world

[Slide 67] One factor the founders acquired very proper: They assist buyers think about a special world. Picture Credit: WayRay (opens in a brand new window)

Being a founder is a lonely, wild journey right into a future that you would be able to see clearly however doesn’t exist but. Storytelling is a vital a part of turning that story into actuality, and WayRay does a fantastic job at displaying off the world it needs to reside in.

This deck has numerous slides displaying potential use instances — such because the augmented actuality prepare window mockup above — like vacationer locations with overlays of roads and cities you is perhaps seeing that add info. Is it obligatory? Who is aware of. Nevertheless it’s so cool that it makes me excited to think about what it is perhaps wish to reside on this world.

As a founder, in case you’re in a position to encourage daydreams of the world you’re describing, you’re doing an unbelievable job. I wouldn’t be in any respect shocked if these visions — fantastically rendered and proven off all through the pitch deck — are some nice alternatives for that to occur.

In the remainder of this teardown, we’ll take a look at three issues WayRay might have improved or performed in another way, together with its full, 75-slide, unedited, unabridged pitch deck.

Three issues that could possibly be improved

Ho boy! OK, so let’s get this out of the best way: 75 slides is approach, approach, approach, approach too many slides.

What’s worse, a few of these slides make me surprise who they’re for. It appears as if whoever put these slides collectively was actually excited by the know-how (and that’s fantastic), however then they shout about among the unsuitable issues from the rooftops, which throws the pitch off the monitor, by some means.

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