Thomas
von der Ohe

Co-Founder, CEO

WHAT DRIVES ME

You come across an opportunity to positively impact societies around the globe maybe once in your lifetime. An opportunity to truly make a difference. Our unique approach to autonomous driving gives us this chance: redefining how people move in a better way. Building and shipping a product with this great team is what drives me day and night.

BACKGROUND

Launched Zoox’ first self-driving vehicle on public streets as leading Technical Program Manager in Silicon Valley, launched Amazon’s first Echo as leading Technical Program Manager on Device Software, Founded two (funded) mobility companies. M. Sc. Management Science and Engineering, Stanford University.

Fabrizio
Scelsi

Co-Founder, CTO

WHAT DRIVES ME

Building products together with an amazing team based on cutting-edge technology to serve a greater purpose and solve problems – for the people, for our planet.

BACKGROUND

Manager of an engineering team in Silicon Valley to build autonomous shuttles, built teams and various mobility products: electric race cars, e-motorcycles, light electric vehicles, electric passenger vehicles, including one of the most successful electric delivery vehicles in Germany. RWTH Aachen, Imperial College London.

Bogdan
Djukic

Co-founder, VP Engineering & Teledrive Experience

WHAT DRIVES ME

Vay is aiming to launch the first vehicle without a safety driver on public roads in Europe. This involves exciting engineering challenges, many of which have never been worked on before, ranging from autonomous vehicle technology, cybersecurity, backend, machine learning and safety-critical SW. Coming up with engineering solutions to these topics is something that I’m super excited to work on at Vay.

BACKGROUND

Team Lead at Microsoft, Senior Software Engineer at Skype. M. Sc. in Computer Science from Belgrade University.

Mariona
Bosch

VP Programs and Engineering Operations

WHAT DRIVES ME

Working closely with people from different cultures and professional backgrounds (hardware, software, operations, etc.) gives me the chance to learn new ways of approaching projects, structuring teams, and setting up processes every day. The results of this incredible teamwork are hugely rewarding, and visible in each step of our product.

BACKGROUND

Part of the management circle at AUDI AG, responsible for the implementation of prototypes at early development stages of new products (innovation vehicles, concept and pre-series vehicles, show cars, design models, testing single parts, PoCs, 3D-printing)

Hans-Leo
Ross

Safety Advisor

WHAT DRIVES ME

All my professional life I have been working for the protection and safety of people and the environment. I want to further provide safe and user-friendly automation systems for our future mobility needs.

BACKGROUND

25+ years experience in system safety at Conti., Mando, Bosch. Led the VDA working group in Germany to create ISO 26262 and influenced worldwide safety standardization. Author of several text books on functional safety.

Justin
Spratt

CBO - Business & Corporate Development

WHAT DRIVES ME

What drives me is to work on goals that have a big impact on society. Additionally, I wanted to work with the smartest and most innovative people in the tech world. That’s better at Vay than any other company I’ve spoken to recently.

BACKGROUND

Responsible for global strategic partnerships at Uber, where he focused on deals with automotive OEMs, vehicle fleet operators, vehicle battery technology companies and electrification infrastructure providers. Was CEO and chief growth officer at Quirk. Began his professional life at Morgan Stanley as a fixed income trader after studying economics and finance. Built the first startup incubator in Africa in 2002 and has been mentoring founders of technology startups for over ten years. He is an angel investor in software technology and holds board positions in some of these companies.

Anja
Rechsteiner

Director of Communications

WHAT DRIVES ME

What drives me is to start something from scratch and use all my experience to find the best way to communicate our exciting story. I believe my work can have an impact on how people feel about more sustainable transportation options.

BACKGROUND

Worked for 15 years in leading communication agencies such as fischerAppelt and Ketchum in Germany and the UK for various brands and companies from FMCG to travel to mobility. Holds an MBA in Communication & Leadership from Quadriga University as well as a Master degree in History, Sociology and Media & Art Studies from University of Constance.

Caleb
Varner

US General Manager

WHAT DRIVES ME

We’re close to letting users experience the Vay Magic for the first time in Las Vegas and I know that they are going to find it a compelling mix of great value powered by a super slick in-app experience. It’s awesome to have the opportunity to take this piece of underlying tech (remote driving) and build an experience around it that users will use, love and tell their friends about.

BACKGROUND

Co-founded and served as the Global General Manager of Uber Rent & Valet, a new mobility investment by Uber. Lead the Global Vehicles team at Uber, overseeing critical planning and P&L responsibilities. Built Uber’s vehicles business in Latin America from the ground and managed the customer-facing financial services business across Sub-Saharan Africa. Lead international financial services strategy engagements with the Boston Consulting Group for John Deere, focusing on regions like Brazil, Africa, and India. Owns a Masters of Business Administration of Duke University.

David
Gossow

Senior Principal Software Engineer

WHAT DRIVES ME

After having worked in autonomous robotics research for a long time in the Silicon Valley, I am thrilled to be working at a company that is finally bringing this technology into people’s everyday lives.

BACKGROUND

Tech Lead at Google Tango in Mountain View, Research Engineer at Willow Garage, yoga instructor since 2018.

Johanna
Loomis

Lead Industrial Designer

WHAT DRIVES ME

What drives me at Vay is the enthusiasm and passion for a vision that is embedded in the company culture, and at the same time the strict discipline in its implementation.

BACKGROUND

Industrial Product Design Lead at TEAMS DESIGN GmbH for over six years, started as a Trainee in Shanghai City. Worked as Industrial and Product Designer at LOTHAR BOHM ASSOCIATES LIMITED, Lutz Herrmann Design, Indeed Innovation and Werksdesign.

Vladimir
Bilonenko

Director of Software Engineering

WHAT DRIVES ME

Helping engineers to do their best and most important work. Elegance in software. Bringing ideas from books to real life and from one domain to another. Going from A to B fast.

BACKGROUND

Software Generalist. Maps and Mobility Geek (Lon, Lat not Lat, Lon). High Load at Yandex, Geo Analytics and Last Mile at HERE Maps, Mobility Platform at Daimler. Conway’s Law Enthusiast.

ALINA
PRESTI

Teledriver

WHAT DRIVES ME

A car enthusiast, driven by cars, driving and technology.

BACKGROUND

Nursery school teacher. Driver at Skoda’s start-up Caredriver.

Stefano
Buzzanca

Head of Operations

WHAT DRIVES ME

What drives me at Vay is the magic. That daily feeling that every small step forward, every single improvement, every small success is a step towards the final goal: to create something unique that will change the lives of many.

BACKGROUND

His 20+ years of experience in various mobility companies make him a great leader and KPI driven operator at Vay. Launched and ran various mobility services in 16+ cities, focused on free-floating car-sharing.

A historic moment: The first car drives without a person in the vehicle on a European public road

  • Vay’s teledriving technology enables driving without a safety driver in the car for the first time in European road traffic 
  • Germany becomes a pioneer in teledriving technology
  • Vay aims to launch an affordable and sustainable door-to-door mobility service

Hamburg, 6th February 2023 – A novelty in Europe: Remotely controlled from the teledrive center, an electric car from Vay drives through Hamburg. For the first time in European road traffic, there is no safety driver in the car. The teledrivers are in full control of the vehicle. They sit at a teledrive station with a car steering wheel and pedals – developed according to automotive industry standards. The teledriven test drives without a safety driver will be performed on a predefined route.

For Vay’s CEO and co-founder Thomas von der Ohe, this drive is a major milestone: “As a leading teledriving company, we have been driving remotely-controlled electric cars on public roads in Berlin and Hamburg for more than three years. With the exemption permit received in December 2022, we were now able to successfully drive the first car without a safety driver on a public road. This is a huge success for the entire team, but also for Hamburg and Europe. In the context of legally enabling new technologies, this is a significant step and Germany is making leaps in taking the global lead in teledriving technology.”

The Authority for Traffic and Mobility Transition (BVM) has issued the exemption permit. Anjes Tjarks, Senator for Traffic and Mobility Transition: “Hamburg is a pioneer in the field of digital and innovative mobility services. We want to offer them where they bring real added value for people in their daily mobility. Vay creates such added value with its teledrive service: no need to search for a parking space, emission-free, digitally bookable and as a convenient service, for example for the ‘last mile’ from the bus or train station to your own front door. I am delighted that Vay has taken another important step towards launching its service and has successfully completed Europe’s first test drives without a safety driver on public roads.” A positive endorsement by TÜV SÜD was the prerequisite for the exemption permit. TÜV SÜD evaluated in particular the functional safety and cybersecurity of the Vay teledrive system in accordance with the ISO 26262 and ISO/SAE 21434 standards. 

Vay is building a door-to-door service where customers order an electric vehicle via the Vay app. What’s unique about Vay’s mobility service is that a teledriver brings the car directly to the customer – remotely controlled from the teledrive center. Teledrivers sit at a teledrive station in Hamburg with all the necessary controls. The driver has an overview of the traffic situation via several screens and headphones. Upon arrival of the car, the customer then physically drives themselves to their destination. Once the customer has arrived at their destination, a teledriver takes over the vehicle once again, meaning the time-consuming search for a parking space is eliminated. In terms of cost, Vay’s service is intended to be similarly priced to carsharing offers and to be a convenient alternative to private car ownership in the long term. With Vay’s service, fewer but electric vehicles can transport more people than conventional individual transport within cities. High costs for mobility can be reduced, while road safety can be increased. 



Vay press contact

Anja Rechtsteiner
Head of Communications
[email protected] / [email protected]
+49 176 60404217