Porsche To Invest $176M USD In New Technologies, Including Blockchainbr>
German automaker Porsche has increased its total investment in venture capital activities by EUR 150 million ($176M USD) for the next five years.
The investment activities are being undertaken by Porsche Ventures and will focus on future technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI), blockchain technology and virtual/augmented reality. The sports car manufacturer said the investments will be aimed at new companies that are in the early and growth phases. The objective is to gain access to trends, new technologies and business models.
Lutz Meschke, Deputy Chairman and Member of the Executive Board for Finance and IT at Porsche AG, said that to continue building on the success that they have enjoyed over the past few years, they must fundamentally change their business model.
“To date, innovation has been driven to a large degree by technology and with strong links to our current core competencies,” Meschke said. “In some cases, the changes that are now becoming necessary are linked to topics beyond our main fields of expertise. With this in mind, it is essential that we build a strong ecosystem with competent partners.”
Porsche Ventures recently invested in Berlin-based startup Gapless, which is developing a solution based on blockchain technology designed to maintain or increase the value of collector’s pieces. Gapless’s platform allows customers to digitally manage their vintage vehicles, including the entire vehicle history, and share this information with other users in a secure format that prevents forgery.
In February of this year, Porsche had begun exploring the use of blockchain applications in its vehicles in partnership with blockchain startup Xain AG, which won Porsche’s first innovation contest on blockchain in June 2017.
At the time, Oliver Döring, Financial Strategist at Porsche, said they can use blockchain to transfer data more quickly and securely, giving their customers more peace of mind in the future, whether they are charging, parking or need to give a third party temporary access to the vehicle.
“We translate the innovative technology into direct benefits for the customer,” he added.