Yamaha has bought a tech startup that develops networks for autonomous road vehicles. The Japanese manufacturer most famous for its motorcycles made an investment of $2 million into Silicon Valley startup company Veniam.
The company says this investment represents the first opportunity explored by its new business subsidiary, Yamaha Motor Ventures and Laboratory Silicon Valley (YMVSV), which began operations in Silicon Valley in August 2015.
Veniam is engaged in the service provision and communication hardware development and sale of wireless mesh networking, a technology that is suited to communication between moving vehicles, and between moving vehicles and stationary objects.
In other words, Veniam has developed technology which provides fleets of vehicles with network connectivity for vehicle telemetry and communications, as well as internet access to passengers in the car.
These networking technologies are often referred to as vehicle to vehicle (V2V) and vehicle to whatever or anything (V2X). The network they use is usually the Internet of Things (IoT).
Veniam has developed and commercialized algorithms which enable the determination of communication routes in wireless mesh networks for moving vehicles, which has been difficult to achieve to date.
It has already begun operations in Portugal and other countries, mainly with transportation operators, and in addition to communication services, is rolling out its all-in-one solutions business including communication devices, data management, and security.
Yamaha Motor will link to planning and development of new technologies, products, and services related to “connected mobility” through the investment in Veniam.
Moreover, Yamaha Motor says it will “continue to take initiatives through YMVSV which lead to new business model development such as theme exploration/fostering and promotion of commercialization for new business development, and will continue to make proactive strategic investments in promising startup companies”.