AutoX Coming to Dubai, Seeks to Launch the Middle East and North Africa’s First Self-Driving Taxi and Other Regional Firsts

19 Sep 2019

AutoX Coming to Dubai, Seeks to Launch the Middle East and North Africa’s First Self-Driving Taxi and Other Regional Firsts

AutoX Hall: Sheikh Maktoum Hall Stand: SM-B22

San Jose, California, September 18, 2019 – When Professor X of autonomous vehicle leader AutoX and his team of world-class artificial intelligence experts arrive in Dubai to attend GITEX 2019 (October 6 – 9) and the Dubai World Congress for Self-Driving Transport (October 15 – 16), they’re looking forward to more than simply showing off their technology and sharing insights into their achievements with show and conference attendees. They want nothing less than to be the UAE and MENA’s first partner in launching the region’s first commercial robotaxi and autonomous delivery service.  They estimate that with investment and a conducive regulatory climate, the UAE’s first commercial robotaxi and autonomous delivery service could become a reality as early as 2020.  


AutoX is currently operating successful robotaxi and autonomous delivery pilot programs in the United States. As a recognized pioneer in robotaxi services, AutoX was the second-ever company to be awarded a license to operate in California and is the very first to launch and operate a robotaxi service — beating many of its well-known peers, such as Google’s Waymo, to market.  Other notable achievements include being ranked #7 in number of autonomous miles driven globally, tied with Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group which was recently valued at more than $7 billion. In China, AutoX has formed partnerships and received significant investments from an impressive list of companies: SAIC, the largest passenger Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) in China; Dongfeng Motors, the largest commercial OEM in China; and BYD, the largest electric vehicle OEM in China.  They have also partnered with the Jiading District of The City of Shanghai to launch a 100-vehicle robotaxi pilot by the end of 2019. In Sweden, they have partnered with National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS), the leading Swedish electric vehicle OEM, to push the frontier on integrating AVs into Europe’s emerging mobility as a service market.   


Rapid timelines and quick scale-up are nothing new for the founder and Chief Executive Officer of AutoX, Jianxiong Xiao (a.k.a., “Professor X”).  In 2016, he stunned both the academic and tech worlds when he resigned from his assistant professor job at Princeton University where he was the Founder and Director of Princeton’s Computer Vision and Robotics Lab.  The company’s stated mission is to “democratize autonomy and make autonomous driving universally accessible to everyone.” And in less than three years, AutoX is now competing with – and in certain urban environments beating – other tech behemoths such as Uber, Tesla, and Google’s Waymo.  


During his visit to the UAE, Dr. Xiao will be joined by AutoX’s Chief Operating Officer, Dr. Jewel Li, and Chief Business Officer, Hugo Fozzati. With AutoX’s competitive strategy relying on its leading position in artificial intelligence, Dr. Li is an invaluable asset to the company.  One of the few female experts in the emerging autonomous vehicle industry, Dr. Li joined AutoX after serving as part of the Watson Core Algorithms team at IBM’s T.J. Watson Research Center in New York. She was among those named as “Women of Influence” by the Silicon Valley Business Journal in 2018.   


“We believe AutoX is an ideal partner for Dubai and the UAE,” explained Dr. Xiao.  “We are impressed by the significant investments the UAE and other MENA countries are making to improve transport infrastructure. In particular, the UAE’s push to become a global technology hub and leader in AI is impressive.  We welcome discussions with the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority, Abu Dhabi Department of Transport, and Sharjah Roads and Transport Authority to fast-track a robotaxi pilot based on our global learnings. With the right regulations, a commercial robotaxi service is possible by 2020. Dubai’s integrated mobility platform, S’hail, offers an outstanding framework for advancing autonomous vehicle mobility.”  


He also emphasizes that the MENA region shares the company’s vision on smart mobility, mobility as a service and the commercial potential of artificial intelligence.  These factors make AutoX a prime opportunity for smart investors in the region who share a similar interest in solving real-world problems by adapting smart mobility to applications such as passenger transport, logistics, manufacturing, and other uses that have yet to be predicted. AutoX is currently in discussions with regional investors and welcomes other potential partners.  


As AutoX has learned from its other pilot programs around the world, success hinges on the UAE and MENA’s emerging autonomous vehicle regulatory framework.  Ideally, countries in the region will adopt open, scalable routes for companies like AutoX to obtain permits for testing autonomous vehicles on the road in the real world, including permits to transport passengers with assisted drivers.  Given a favorable environment, Dr. Xiao predicts that AutoX could have fully-functioning autonomous vehicle pilots across various use cases by 2020. With their many existing, successful pilot programs around the world, it is clear that AutoX never fails to back its promises with actions, and it views the fast-paced growth and embrace of technology in Dubai and the UAE to be a particularly good match for potential partnerships and investors. 


For more information, please contact


Journalists interested in an interview with Dr. Jianxiong Xiao (a.k.a., Professor X), Founder and Chief Executive Officer of AutoX, or with Dr. Jewel Li, Chief Operating Officer of AutoX, are encouraged to contact


Notes to the Editor


About Dr. Jianxiong Xiao, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, AutoX


Jianxiong Xiao (a.k.a., Professor X) is the Founder and CEO of AutoX, Inc. He received a BEng. and MPhil. in Computer Science from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in 2009.  He received his Ph.D. from the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 2013 and served as an assistant professor at Princeton University and the founding director of the Princeton Computer Vision and Robotics Labs from 2013 - 2016.  Some of his notable awards include the Best Student Paper Award at the European Conference on Computer Vision (ECCV, 2012), the Google Research Best Papers Award and the Google U.S./Canada Fellowship in Computer Vision (2012), as well as two Google Faculty Awards in 2014 and 2015. He was named one of the “35 Innovators Under 35” by MIT Technology Review in 2017, and one of the 12 “Promising Entrepreneurs to Keep an Eye on in 2018” by Next Visionaries. More information at:


About Dr. Jewel Li, Chief Operating Officer, AutoX


Since 2017, Dr. Zhuo (Jewel) Li has served as the Chief Operating Officer for AutoX.  She received her Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Delaware in 2016 and worked as a researcher at the T.J. Watson Research Center at IBM on the Watson Core Algorithms team, leading R&D of Watson products powered by state-of-the-art deep neural networks on the Watson SaaS product platform.  She was named one of the “Women of Influence” by the Silicon Valley Business Journal in 2018.   


About Hugo Fozzati, Chief Business Officer, AutoX


Since 2017, Fozzati has led the ambitious growth strategy of AutoX, a California and Hong Kong based L4 autonomous driving company building an A.I. driver. His previous roles have taken him across the globe: working in mergers & acquisitions and venture capital in London, New York, and Washington, D.C. covering mobility, consumer internet, commodities, and emerging markets. Hugo has an MBA from Georgetown University, a B.S. from Babson College, and is fluent in 5 languages


About AutoX


AutoX was founded in 2016 by Dr. Jianxiong Xiao (a.k.a. Professor X) and the team consists of top scientists from MIT, CMU, Stanford, UC Berkeley, Harvard, as well as a team of experienced engineers. AutoX's multi-sensor fusion system enables robust self-driving performance for the most challenging scenarios in urban driving. Its xUrban system is the first AI system in the world that could handle China’s metropolitan downtown driving scenarios. Partnered with multiple major automakers of the world, AutoX is on a path to build the world's most experienced AI driver to enable mobility and logistics companies to enjoy the benefit of the most reliable self-driving technology.



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