German Tier 1 supplier ZF Friedrichshafen has acquired a 60 percent stake in Netherlands-based automated transport systems provider 2getthere, which has offices in San Francisco, Dubai and Singapore. At present the company's applications range from driverless electric transport systems at airports, business and theme parks to dedicated urban transport infrastructures.
With this strategic investment, ZF says it is executing its next-generation mobility strategy to strengthen its foothold in the Mobility as a Service (MaaS) and automated guided vehicle growth markets, which also complements its existing activities.
“2getthere has more than three decades of experience in the market for autonomous passenger transport vehicles as well as unique engineering and software competences. This acquisition supports our strategy to become a leading autonomous transportation systems supplier in the booming new mobility market,” said Wolf-Henning Scheider, chairman of the Board of Management at ZF Friedrichshafen.
The company says with this strategic investment it is strengthening its position in the growth markets of MaaS solutions, autonomous transport systems, and shared autonomous vehicles. The majority stake in 2getthere will complement ZF’s existing investments and co-operations, such as the e.GO Moove, a JV with e.GO Mobile, which targets the production of the e.GO Mover autonomous minibus, as well as Transdev, a leading operator and global provider of integrated mobility solutions.
2getthere was founded in 1984, and has since then accumulated over than 100 million kilometres of autonomous mileage with driverless passenger and cargo transport systems in several major cities worldwide, including Rotterdam, Abu Dhabi and Singapore, as well as numerous ports and airports.
The company's full electric driverless systems, in revenue service at business park Rivium (Capelle aan den IJssel) and Masdar City (Abu Dhabi) have transported more than 14 million people reliably. ZF says the reliability of the systems installed by 2getthere, including vehicle controls and software architecture, exceeds 99.7 percent.
Carel C. van Helsdingen, founder and CEO, 2getthere said: “The market for driverless electric transport systems is developing dynamically. We want to continue to lead the market and the involvement of ZF is helping us to realize our growth plans, accelerate our technology roadmap and provide the required security for new and existing customers. The technological cooperation with ZF will support 2getthere’s work for the delivery of mixed traffic applications like Rivium and Brussels Airport."
In the last three years 2getthere has reported 60 percent growth in revenue terms. In the future, ZF and 2getthere plan to closely work together to further develop technologies for autonomous transport systems.
“We have developed into a complete systems supplier for automated functions and we are therefore in a perfect position to support 2getthere. We can deliver electric drivelines, solutions for sensor technology, high performance computing, and actuators for all levels of automated applications,” explained Scheider.
In addition, ZF says it will also benefit from the vast field experience of the Dutch company and its extensive engineering and software competences when it comes to configuring and implementing complete autonomous transport systems. 2getthere’s engineering and software development teams in Utrecht are expected to grow significantly over the next years, approximately doubling the current 60 employees.
The two companies have not disclosed the transaction volume.