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Continental and Osram jv to make intelligent lighting for automotive

07 Nov 2017

Partners announce 50:50 deal to market innovative lighting, electronics, software to manufacture new products

Technology companies Continental and Osram are to establish a joint venture to develop and market intelligent automotive lighting systems. The global joint venture would operate under the name Osram Continental GmbH and has its registered office in the Munich region.

This week’s announcement follows the companies’ July 2017 statement of intent to set up a jv – as reported by optics.org at the time.

Continental and Osram will each have a 50 percent stake in the jv. Their stated aim is to “generate annual sales in the mid-triple-digit-million-euro range” (around €500 million?) with a workforce of around 1,500 employees and 17 locations worldwide. The new venture is scheduled to start in 2018 subject to agreements and the consent of each party’s Supervisory Board and antitrust approvals.

Osram said it would be transferring its automotive Solid State Lighting (SSL) module business over to the joint venture. Continental would be incorporating its light control business from the Body & Security business unit. This would lead Osram Continental to combine semiconductor-based lighting modules, advanced electronics, optics and software expertise with access to sensor technology and innovative light sources.

Osram Continental would therefore be able to offer a broad range of end-to-end, innovative lighting solutions, designed especially for headlight and tail light applications. The launch statement said, “The intention is to work together to design perfectly coordinated and innovative products and solutions, and bring them to market more quickly. The joint venture would operate on the market as a standalone company.”

Partners: Osram's Hans-Joachim Schwabe and Continental's Andreas Wolf.

Partners: Osram's Hans-Joachim Schwabe and Continental's Andreas Wolf.

’Rapid innovation’

Helmut Matschi, member of the Continental Executive Board, said, “The pace of innovation in the automotive industry lighting segment is rapid, and software is strengthening this dynamic. While conventional lighting expertise remains important to our customers, the addition of electronics to enable new light functions is taking on increased significance. The joint venture would systematically combine these two areas and raise them to a new level.”

Stefan Kampmann, member of the Osram Licht Management Board, added, “The joint venture is a sign that Osram is focusing its efforts consistently on digitalization. Continental’s expertise in software and electronics is the perfect complement to our technology leadership in automotive lighting. It will create a forward-looking company for digital automotive lighting.”

The jv announcement statement added that the automotive industry lighting market is currently “in the grip of technological change – similar to the situation with general lighting, this market is moving toward semiconductor-based lighting solutions. Thanks to increasingly intelligent light functions in vehicles as well as new light-based design and application options, semiconductor-based technology, software and electronics are gaining progressively in importance. Each year, growth in the market for semiconductor-based front lighting solutions is somewhere in the double-digit range. Market studies indicate that by as early as 2025 more than half of new cars worldwide could be fitted with semiconductor-based lighting solutions.”

Universe Kogaku America Inc.LASEROPTIK GmbHABTechECOPTIKHyperion OpticsCHROMA TECHNOLOGY CORP.Optikos Corporation
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