Magneti Marelli has finalized an agreement for the acquisition of a French startup named SmartMeUp that specializes in ‘perception software’. Magneti Marelli will acquire 100 percent of SmartMeUp and believes that this acquisition will give it access to software that will help it to expedite the development of technology related to autonomous driving, smart cities and safety technology applications. It is expected that the closing of the deal will be completed by the last quarter of 2018.
SmartMeUp makes software that has the capability to process signals from sensors, to detect and recognize objects around the vehicle, and facilitates 3D environment building and object movement tracking. This kind of software will be a key component of autonomous vehicles.
The main feature that differentiates SmartMeUp’s software from that developed by other companies is that it needs low computing power and generates low heat. This makes it viable for the software to be rolled out on a large scale for use in embedded automotive applications. SmartMeUp also makes software for ‘Driver Monitoring’ and such software is included in the NCAP requirements roadmap, and is expected to become mandatory by the end of this decade. Magneti Marelli’s acquisition of SmartMeUp will give the company access to a group of experienced scientists and engineers, who have considerable expertise in this field.
Commenting on the deal, Pietro Gorlier, CEO of Magneti Marellisaid that the acquisition of SmartMeUp as well as the recent investment in LiDAR expert LeddarTech and its very own expertise in the fields of lighting and electronics will strengthen Magneti Marelli’s contribution to autonomous driving development with focus on the sensing and perception components of the architecture.
The company’s first step with regard to the development of autonomous vehicle development was the development of the ‘Smart Corner’ concept, which integrates sensors into the vehicle lights. Magneti arelli then went on to acquire a significant stake in solid-state LiDAR expert LeddarTech, for the joint development of LiDAR systems. The company is also internally developing automotive grade cameras and electronic control units for sensor fusion.
Hamid Moaref has always been fascinated by cars and the automotive industry. His family has a longstanding association with the industry and has been in the tire business for the past 35 years. Raised in Dubai, Hamid attended Capilano University in Vancouver where he graduated with a BBA in marketing before attending an intensive course in magazine publishing in 2005. He has been the publisher and chief editor of Tires & Parts magazine for the past ten years.
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