September 22, 2017 – Silicon Valley Automotive News

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Silicon Valley News Update

Week Ending September 22, 2017


This week we saw some interesting developments across the Automotive ecosystem and beyond. Below are some key highlights:

  • Samsung creates $300M autonomous driving fund for AI, HPC Research. Read More
  • General Motors competing with tech giants in race to offer self-driving cars. Read More
  • Volkswagen to deploy autonomous ride-hailing vehicles by 2021. Read More
  • Hyundai could become world’s No. 1 with FCA merger. Read More
  • Innoviz funding round worth $65 million and rising. Read More
  • Self-Driving car ‘godfather’ to help Lyft get engineers, offer flying car classes. Read More
  • Car giants under pressure to keep inventing. Read More
  • The Silicon Valley turns up a gear. Read More
  • Volkswagen: Artificial intelligence is becoming a key competitive factor. Read More
  • Alphabet reportedly considering $1 Billion investment in Lyft. Read More
  • Suppliers say Silicon Valley still has much to learn. Read More
  • Intel reveals it has been working with Google on self-driving cars since 2009. Read More
  • Ford is exploring a strategic partnership with an Indian auto maker. Read More
  • General Motors and Cruise announce first mass-production self-driving car. Read More


HMP Commentary:

Samsung is establishing a $300 million Automotive Innovation Fund to build investments in auto-related startups and technologies. The company seeks to develop and focus on connected and autonomous vehicles. Google’s parent company, Alphabet is considering about a potential investment of $1billion in the ride-hailing service Lyft. Both companies have held conversations with each other even though the deal hasn’t been confirmed yet. Innoviz Technologies just announced that it has raised $65 million in Series B funding as its groundbreaking LiDAR solution moves into mass production. Delphi Automotive and Magna International have participated in the round, along with additional new investors including 360 Capital Partners, Glory Ventures, Naver and others. Ford Motor Co and Indian automaker, Mahindra, have agreed to explore a strategic alliance, as a way to strengthen Ford’s presence in India and help Mahindra to expand into other global markets and to compete against technology-focused firms. By 2021, Volkswagen will introduce a fleet of self-driving EVs for ride-hailing service. The tests will begin soon at its headquarters in Germany.


Some rumors are circulating that Hyundai Motor is looking to acquire Fiat Chrysler Automobiles despite the automaker’s vehement denial. Intel Corp. has stated that it has been working with Google’s autonomous driving technology, Waymo, since 2009. Their agreement will continue as Waymo’s newest vehicles feature Intel-based technologies for sensor processing, general compute and connectivity. Sebastian Thrun, the original leader of Google’s self-driving car project, is going to help rideshare company, Lyft, staff up its autonomous vehicle team with training through Udacity, his high-tech vocational service. General Motors wants to take the lead by joining several technology companies including Apple and Google in order to offer self-driving options to consumers and recruiting potential candidates from Silicon Valley and universities. “The pressure is for us to invent before the Valley does,” said Bill Coughlin, CEO of Ford Global Technologies. In fact, automakers are pressured up to keep up with the Silicon Valley companies focusing on autonomous vehicles and ride-sharing and have considerably boosted their US patent filings over the past five years.

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Harvest Management Partners LLC is a Silicon Valley based investment bank, specializing in company financial assessment, advisory services, plan of action development, strategic marketing, and worldwide negotiation of mergers and acquisitions.  Since 2010, Harvest Management Partners has assisted over 40 technology clients within the software, semiconductor, security, IP and automotive electronics sectors.  They are also the exclusive Silicon Valley advisors for Fiat Chrysler Automotive (NYSE: FCAU) and TE Connectivity (NYSE: TEL).  With a combined history of 60+ years of direct operational experience and relationships with venture capitalists and C-Level executives worldwide, Harvest Management Partners is well positioned to provide a comprehensive set of unique services for their clients. For more information, visit