Samsung has established the Samsung Automotive Innovation Fund, a new $300-million fund focused exclusively on the automotive market. The Fund will focus on connected car and autonomous technologies, including smart sensors, machine vision, artificial intelligence, high-performance computing, connectivity solutions, automotive-grade safety solutions, security, and privacy.
In addition to the fund, Harman, which was acquired by Samsung earlier this year, has established a new Autonomous/ADAS Strategic Business Unit (SBU). The unit which will report to Harman’s Connected Car division, will work with the Samsung Strategy and Innovation Center (SSIC) Smart Machines team to develop key technologies for safer, smarter, connected vehicles.The SSIC Smart Machines team is an advanced automotive engineering group dedicated to enabling next-generation mobility solutions.
Commenting Young Sohn, President and Chief Strategy Officer of Samsung Electronics and Chairman of the Board of Harman said: “The Autonomous/ADAS Strategic Business Unit 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.”
To address the increasing demand for integrated solutions, particularly those for automated driving, Samsung and HARMAN will focus on engineering, high-performance computing, sensor technologies, algorithms, artificial intelligence, as well as connectivity and cloud solutions that enable Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and automated driving.
“There is already a high demand for ADAS solutions, and that demand is rapidly growing with the advancements in connected cars and autonomous driving,” said Dinesh Paliwal, President and CEO of Harman.
The first strategic investment of the Samsung Automotive Innovation Fund will be in TTTech, a specialist in functional safety, deterministic networking, real-time systems, and complex software integration for ADAS and automated driving platforms.
Earlier investments by Samsung’s existing investment funds have included stakes in automotive startups, including AImotive and Renovo for automated driving; Quanergy, TetraVue, and Oculii for sensors; Autotalks and Valens for connectivity; and Graphcore for high-performance computing.
To date, Samsung has secured licenses for on-road testing of autonomous driving software and hardware under development in Korea and California. Samsung will not enter the car-manufacturing business, remaining focused on working with automakers and mobility enablers to develop the next generation of automotive innovation.