Nokia yesterday announced the launch of a USD 100 million Connected Car fund to be managed by Nokia Growth Partners (NGP). According to the company, the fund will identify and invest in companies whose innovations will be important for a world of connected and intelligent vehicles.
Nokia is already a major player in the automotive industry providing location intelligence for connected vehicles through HERE. The NGP fund, working closely with HERE, will seek to make investments that also support the growth of the ecosystem around HERE’s mapping and location products and services.
Speaking during the launch, Nokia President and CEO said Rajeev Suri NGP has been consistently performing well bringing in both new innovation and financial return to Nokia. “Our new USD 100 million venture fund launched today further underlines our belief that the connected car is a significant growth opportunity where NGP is poised to make great investments.” he said
“For the last few years there has been a surge in innovation that has brought technological advances leading to safer, cleaner, increasingly connected, intelligent and more affordable vehicles. Vehicles are becoming a new platform for technology adoption very similar to phones or tablets,” said Paul Asel, Partner at Nokia Growth Partners. “We are excited to deepen our collaboration with HERE through the Connected Car fund to invest in companies that are driving the future of the auto ecosystem, local services and personal mobility.”
“NGP’s Connected Car fund underscores that connectivity is rapidly reshaping what is possible in the car environment,” said Michael Halbherr, CEO of HERE. “We believe that connected cars equipped with precise location awareness and sensor data can become powerful devices capable of helping drivers make sense of the world around them. With more than 25 years of experience in creating automotive grade maps for the automobile industry, we look forward to working with promising companies in NGP’s new fund to create a whole new class of services that keep drivers safe and connected.”
The Connected Car fund extends NGP’s global investment activities in the U.S., India, China and Europe where Nokia Growth Partners continue to invest in high potential businesses. The new fund brings Nokia’s commitments managed by NGP to USD 700 million. As an independent VC sponsored by Nokia, NGP has a strong track record of investing in technology companies that have made an impact in their respective industries globally, including Rocket Fuel, Heptagon and UCweb.
The Connected Car fund will be the fourth fund that NGP has managed on behalf of Nokia over the past decade.
By Nixon Kanali