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Samsung is investing $300m in autonomous driving, TTTech first to benefit

Tyrone Stewart

SamsungSamsung has established a $300m (£227m) fund to focus on the advancement of connected car and autonomous technologies, including smart sensors, machine vision, AI, and more.

The Samsung Automotive Innovation Fund has been setup alongside a Harman – which Samsung acquired in the past year – Autonomous/ADAS strategic business unit (SBU). The new unit will report to Harman’s connected car division and work with the Samsung Strategy and Innovation Centre (SSIC) smart machines team on key technologies for connected vehicles.

Samsung and Harman say they will ‘focus on engineering, high-performance computing, sensor technologies, algorithms, AI’, connectivity and cloud solutions for autonomous cars.

“During this period of extraordinary transformation in the automotive industry, we are excited to play a leadership role in supporting and shaping the future of smarter, more connected vehicles,” said Young Sohn, president and CSO of Samsung Electronics and chairman of the board of Harman.  “The Autonomous/ADAS SBU and automotive fund reflect the company’s commitment to the values of open innovation and collaboration. In partnership with OEMs and startups, we will make the driver and passenger experience safer, more convenient, and more enjoyable.”

The first strategic investment from the Automotive Innovation fund has gone to TTTech. Samsung has entered into a strategic partnership with the networking and safety solutions company, and joins Audi as a major investor following an investment of €75m (£68m) to promote the development of safe autonomous vehicles.

“We are very proud to have Samsung as an investor and partner in TTTech to create solutions for the next generation of highly integrated and data-intensive safety systems” said Georg Kopetz, member of the board at TTTech. “Samsung brings a breadth and a depth of technologies as well as an ecosystem of partners to accelerate development for level 2 to level 5 autonomous platforms.”