Volvo Cars, the global premium car maker, and Autoliv Inc (NYSE: ALV and SSE: ALIVsdb), the worldwide leader in automotive safety systems, have signed a letter of intent to set up a new jointly-owned company to develop next generation autonomous driving software.
The planned new company will have its headquarters in Gothenburg, Sweden, and an initial workforce taken from both companies of around 200, increasing to over 600 in the medium term. The company is expected to start operations in the beginning of 2017.
The joint venture will create a new entrant in the growing global market for autonomous driving software systems. It marks the first time a leading premium car maker has joined forces with a tier one supplier to develop new ADAS and AD technologies.
The new company, which has yet to be named, will develop advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) and autonomous drive (AD) systems for use in Volvo cars and for sale exclusively by Autoliv to all car makers globally, with revenues shared by both companies.
The joint venture will bring together two global leaders in automotive safety, underlining the contribution ADAS and AD can make to road safety and speeding the development and introduction of fully autonomous cars.
Volvo Cars has an established reputation for making some of the world’s safest cars, having invented the three point safety belt and consistently developed and introduced world leading active and passive safety systems. It has a medium term vision that no one will be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo by 2020.
Autoliv is the world’s leading supplier of safety systems to car makers worldwide and has led the way in the development and introduction of active and passive safety technologies to the world’s car makers for more than 60 years.
Håkan Samuelsson, president and chief executive of Volvo Cars, said: “By combining our know how and resources we will create a world leader in AD software development. This means we can introduce this exciting technology to our customers faster.”
Jan Carlson, chairman, chief executive and president of Autoliv, said: “There are no two companies that can claim to have done more for automotive safety worldwide than Autoliv and Volvo. This new company is a recognition of the fact that autonomous driving is the next step to transform road safety.”
Both Autoliv and Volvo Cars will licence and transfer the intellectual property for their ADAS systems to the joint venture. From this base the company will develop new ADAS technologies and AD systems. It expects to have its first ADAS products available for sale by 2019 with AD technologies available by 2021.
Autoliv will be the exclusive supplier and distribution channel for all the new company’s products towards third parties, except Volvo Cars which will source directly from the new company. Its management will comprise of representatives from Autoliv and Volvo Cars.
Dennis Nobelius, managing director of Volvo Switzerland and formerly vice president vehicle line 90 at Volvo Cars, will be the chief executive of the new joint venture.
The non-binding letter of intent is subject to further negotiations and the parties reaching a final definitive agreement, and there is no guarantee that any definitive agreement will be reached or that the forming of the joint venture contemplated by the non-binding letter of intent will occur.
Note to editors:
Volvo Cars and Autoliv invite you to a press conference
Håkan Samuelsson, president and chief executive officer of Volvo Cars and Jan Carlson, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Autoliv, will host a joint press conference. There will be a Q&A at the press conference.
Tuesday, September 6th at 15.00 CEST (i.e. 14:00 UK Time, 09:00 am ET)
Conference & Events 7A Centralen
Address: Vasagatan 7A, 3rd floor, Stockholm
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Volvo Car Group in 2015
For the 2015 financial year, Volvo Car Group recorded an operating profit of 6,620 MSEK (2,128 MSEK in 2014). Revenue over the period amounted to 164,043 MSEK (137,590 MSEK). For the full year 2015, global sales reached a record 503,127 cars, an increase of 8 per cent versus 2014. The record sales and operating profit cleared the way for Volvo Car Group to continue investing in its global transformation plan.
About Volvo Car Group
Volvo has been in operation since 1927. Today, Volvo Cars is one of the most well-known and respected car brands in the world with sales of 503,127 in 2015 in about 100 countries. Volvo Cars has been under the ownership of the Zhejiang Geely Holding (Geely Holding) of China since 2010. It formed part of the Swedish Volvo Group until 1999, when the company was bought by Ford Motor Company of the US. In 2010, Volvo Cars was acquired by Geely Holding.
As of December 2015, Volvo Cars had almost 29,000 employees worldwide. Volvo Cars head office, product development, marketing and administration functions are mainly located in Gothenburg, Sweden. Volvo Cars head office for China is located in Shanghai. The company’s main car production plants are located in Gothenburg (Sweden), Ghent (Belgium), Chengdu and Daqing (China), while engines are manufactured in Skövde (Sweden) and Zhangjiakou (China) and body components in Olofström (Sweden).
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