Hyundai announce new facility in Silicon Valley

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Hyundai announce new facility in Silicon Valley

Hyundai Motor Group is opening an innovation center in Silicon Valley, home of a number of leading technology companies, in an effort to expand its research and development capacity to keep pace with the rapidly-changing automotive industry.

The group - which includes Korea’s two largest automakers, Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors - said on Wednesday that it has expanded “Hyundai Ventures,” the company’s existing strategic investment division in Silicon Valley, into “Cradle” (Center for Robotic-Augmented Design in Living Experience), an innovation center dedicated to research and development in so-called autotech. Autotech refers to automotive technologies that combine traditional vehicles with advanced forms of technologies such as artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, smart-cities and robots.

“Silicon Valley is currently the leading city in the world in artificial intelligence and self-driving vehicle technologies,” explained a company spokesperson through a press release. “Hyundai Motor Group is paying close attention .?.?. to the synergy [the technologies] could have in the automobile industry.”

Currently, Silicon Valley is home to autotech companies such as Faraday Future, a start-up that focuses on the development of intelligent electric vehicles, and Local Motors, which develops vehicles using 3-D printing.

The company said it hopes to enhance strategic partnerships with local start-ups, while helping Korean start-ups find a place in Silicon Valley. It will also carry out projects to test new technologies and business models.

“The role of Hyundai Cradle will not be limited [to finding and incubating start-ups] but it will also be used as a network hub [that connects] the group’s innovation centers around the world,” said Hyundai in a press release.


BY CHOI HYUNG-JO [choi.hyungjo@joongang.co.kr]

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