acquires 3D map startup Ushr for $200 million

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Japanese 3D map data provider is acquiring American 3D map maker for $200 million. Both the firms currently deal in providing high-definition road maps in Japan and North America, respectively. For this acquisition, Dynamic Map Platform will raise about 22 billion yen ($198.9 million) from investors including two existing shareholders, the Japanese state-backed INCJ fund and Mitsubishi Electric.

Mitsubishi Electric Corporation has already announced that it will make an investment of about JPY 2 billion ($18 million) in the company. Ushr’s current investors include GM Ventures, EnerTech Capital, Emerald Technology Ventures and Forte Ventures. Terms of the agreement are not being disclosed.

Using survey-grade LiDAR and camera technology, Ushr has mapped all controlled access highways in the United States and Canada; road features are represented in the map to within approximately four inches of geospatial accuracy. When combined with vehicles equipped with sensors and software enabling autonomous driving, Ushr’s HD maps allow self-driving cars to safely operate on mapped roadways, providing precise lane centering, smooth control through curves and the ability to anticipate roadway changes. Ushr’s market leading HD map technology was integrated into General Motors’ Super Cruise, the industry’s first true hands-free advanced driver assistance system for the highway, and first-to-market in the 2018 Cadillac CT6.

“DMP and Ushr share common values of progressing autonomous driving and advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) as well as enhancing occupant safety and comfort through HD map technology,” said Tsutomu Nakajima, President of DMP. “Through the combination, we will be able to offer automotive OEMs a comprehensive HD mapping solution for the North American and Japanese markets, with the ability to expand globally in the future. Further, we will jointly improve the technologies and expand the area of services, accelerating our customers’ ability to deploy autonomous driving and ADAS going forward.”

“DMP represents a tremendous partner for Ushr and shares our passion for realizing the potential of autonomous vehicle control technology,” said Bruce Gordon, CEO of Ushr. “Joining forces with DMP will help us to further access the market for self-driving cars and ADAS, particularly as consumer adoption is expected to grow rapidly in the coming years. On behalf of the Ushr team, I look forward to partnering with DMP to build on our success moving forward.”

“From a board perspective, we believe this agreement represents an excellent outcome for Ushr’s customers, employees, partners, and shareholders,” said Scott Ungerer, Founder and Managing Director of EnerTech Capital and Chairman of the Board of Ushr. “Once closed, this unique combination will signify a remarkable step forward for advanced mobility solutions becoming broadly available to consumers.”

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