Samsung Creates $300M Autonomous Driving Fund

Samsung Creates $300M Autonomous Driving Fund

On the same day, Samsung established a new strategic business unit alongside Harman International Industries that will exclusively focus on self-driving technology and advanced driver-assistance systems. It expects to receive a permit for self-driving auto tests in California in addition to its recently acquired permit in the Korean market.

It is pretty obvious that Samsung is still perfecting the infinity display technology, but the company is already planning to achieve more.

Samsung has already clearly signalled its interest in this area, through its acquisition earlier this year of infotainment and connected auto technology company Harman for $8bn.

"Increased competitiveness and growth potential of the vehicle component business of LG will be able to drive up the value of the entire company", said Koh Jung-woo, an analyst from NH Investment Securities.

Samsung has previously made investments in other 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. Some of them are developing autonomous cars and are hiring resources who can tap this area for them.

TTTech has a diverse portfolio as it develops systems for road, air and aerospace.

Samsung Electronics is starting to focus on a different kind of mobile technology.

But TTTech's high reliability computer networking systems can also be used in the aerospace sectors, such as in the Boeing 787 Dreamliner and NASA's Orion spacecraft.

One of them looks is the production of autonomous cars, a huge investment in which Samsung is putting all its hopes.

The first to receive funding - 75 million euros (US$89.16 million or 101.29 billion won) - was TTTech, a Vienna-based firm with specialty in automated driving platforms and Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) technologies. It also creates safety controls for the automotive industry. It's also setting up a $300 million fund to invest in startups in the field.

The company has already splashed out $8 billion on the audio firm Harman, which is focused on connected vehicle solutions. “This strategic business unit demonstrates Samsungs and HARMANs commitment to answer that call – to be the definitive partner for seamless and integrated technologies. He is an automotive industry veteran, and was heading the pioneering autonomous driving program at Delphi Automotive Plc before joining the South Korean tech giant in 2015.