Zenuity, the joint venture between Autoliv and Volvo Cars, starts its operations today. Zenuity is a new entrant in the growing global market for autonomous driving software systems. It marks the first time a premium car maker has joined forces with a tier one supplier to develop leading advanced driver assist systems (ADAS) and autonomous driving (AD) technologies.
At today’s closing, Autoliv will make a total investment of around 1.1 billion SEK into the joint venture, the large majority of which is an initial cash contribution, but it also includes intellectual property, know-how and personnel. At the same time Volvo Cars will contribute intellectual property, know-how and personnel into the joint venture. As previously announced, Autoliv and Volvo Cars own the joint venture 50/50. The formation of the joint venture was first announced in September 2016.
Headquartered in Gothenburg, Sweden and with additional operations in Munich, Germany, and Detroit, USA, the initial workforce of close to 300 people is from Autoliv and Volvo Cars as well as some new hires. The joint ventures workforce is expected to grow to over 600 employees in the medium term.
Both Autoliv and Volvo Cars license and transfer intellectual property for their ADAS systems to the joint venture. From this base, the joint venture will develop new ADAS products and AD technologies. Zenuity is expected to have its first ADAS products available for sale by 2019 with AD technologies following shortly thereafter.
The mission for Zenuity is to use the latest ADAS/AD know-how to create robust and flexible solutions that are at the technological forefront – for today and tomorrow. This will be achieved by utilizing extensive experience and real-life tested solutions. Customers will be offered flexibility to choose based on a platform with modular solutions, all offered in a timely manner to the market. Zenuity is further committed to shape the industry through the delivery of spearhead solutions that continuously push the AD boundaries.
By being a leader in AD technology, combined with the business model for Zenuity, the owners expect three elements of value creation. Firstly, the business model means the value of the joint venture will increase going forward. Secondly, for Autoliv this is a clear step in the development of its active safety focus. Thirdly, for Volvo Cars the joint venture ensures world leading competence in a key technology area.
Autoliv is the exclusive supplier and distribution channel for all Zenuity’s products sold to third parties, and there will be no exclusivity toward any customer or the owners. Volvo Cars can source such products directly from the joint venture.