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Metawave Names Karen C. Francis to Board of Directors

Metawave Delivers Disruptive Radar to Make Autonomous Driving Safe and Leading Wireless Technology to Advance 5G Wireless Communications

October 16, 2018: PALO ALTO, Calif.--Metawave Corporation, advancing autonomous driving and 5G wireless communications with its leading radar technology, today announced the appointment of Karen C. Francis to its board of directors. Bringing years of experience to both automotive and technology industries, Francis joins Denso’s Tony Cannestra, Metawave’s Maha Achour and Conny Marx, and Motus Ventures’ Jim Disanto.

“I am proud to be a part of Metawave’s board as the company solves big needs in two rapidly growing industries – autonomous driving and ubiquitous wireless communications,” said Francis. “The need for a more intelligent radar as a critical sensor for self driving cars is paramount to the growth in that market. And, ensuring network efficiencies and ubiquity around the world for faster wireless communications is clearly needed as the world moves to 5G. Metawave is poised to lead in bringing needed, intelligent technology platforms to market.”

Francis brings decades of experience across public and private companies. Most recently, she served as chairman and CEO of AcademixDirect, a Silicon Valley-based education technology firm, and chairman and CEO of Publicis and Hal Riney. She has also held senior leadership positions at Ford Motor Company as vice president and president/CEO of ConsumerConnect, Ford’s corporate venture capital group and at General Motors as the general manager of Oldsmobile where she was responsible for sales, marketing, strategy, and product development. She currently serves on a number of boards including Telenav, a connected car embedded navigation company, and Nauto, an AI-powered autonomous vehicle technology company. Francis is a well-known thought leader on the future of autonomy, innovation, and talent development.

She has been named a National Association of Corporate Directors Board Leadership Fellow, holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics from Dartmouth College, and holds a Master of Business Administration from Harvard Business School.

“As a key member of our board, Karen will help us heighten our presence in both autonomous driving and communications by bringing together key partners, customers and investors as we continue to build our product and grow our business quickly,” said Maha Achour, Metawave co-founder and CEO.

Three sensors are fundamental components of the perception system for self-driving cars today: camera, LiDAR and radar. The camera is the highest resolution sensor but cannot see objects beyond 70 meters. LiDAR extends the range to about 180 meters with a fairly high resolution imaging capability. Radar operates at a lower frequency and sees long ranges sooner than any other sensor. However, today's radar lacks resolution and cannot differentiate objects. These systems require multiple antennas, which are heavy and expensive, and need to analyze every signal in the digital space, which takes time.

Metawave’s WARLORD™ smart radar platform, uses one antenna and pushes complexity to analog for faster and longer object detection – 150+ m for pedestrian and 300+m for cars. The antenna itself focuses and steers the beam to recognize objects quickly and leverages AI to learn as the radar sees even in bad weather, dirty roads, and in presence of other radars. Metawave’s SABER™ antenna modules and radios, integrated to network providers’ base stations, shapes each user’s signal into a very narrow cone, and directs it to each user’s wireless device. Metawave’s AWARE™ AI engine easily integrates with 5G providers’ wireless and network algorithms.

For information about Metawave’s WARLORD (automotive) and SABER (wireless communications) platforms, please visit, follow us on Twitter @metawavecorp, on Facebook, or contact us at

About Metawave Metawave is a wireless technology company that seeks to revolutionize the future of wireless communications and radar sensing. Leveraging adaptive metamaterials and AI, Metawave’s primary focus is to build intelligent beam-steering radar for autonomous driving. Changing the way automakers deploy radar, Metawave is building high-performance radars capable of 4D point-cloud imaging, non-line of sight object detection, and vehicle-to-vehicle communication, making cars safer, smarter, and connected. In parallel, Metawave is developing smart antenna platforms for Fixed Wireless and 5G cellular networks to provide faster infrastructure and near-instant connectivity for billions of people. Founded in 2017, Metawave is headquartered in Palo Alto and has offices in Carlsbad, CA. For information about Please visit, follow us on Twitter @metawavecorp, on Facebook, or contact us at

Metawave is funded by auto industry leaders including DENSOToyota AI VenturesHyundai Motor CompanyInfineon, and Asahi Glass. Additional strategic investors include Motus VenturesKhosla VenturesAutotech VenturesBold Capital, Thyra GlobalSAIC CapitalWestern Technology Investment, and Alrai Capital. The automotive radar market is predicted to exceed $9,475.4 million by 2023, according to Research and Markets.


Metawave PR | Kelly Brieger | 650.704.1748 | |

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