Lidar Industry Insights

Growing the MicroVision Family: Welcome Ibeo Automotive Systems GmbH

MicroVision and IBEO Announcement image

With the announcement that MicroVision will be acquiring assets from Ibeo Automotive Systems GmbH, I wanted to take a moment to share how this transaction strengthens our commitment to advancing automotive safety and accelerates our go-to-market strategy.

Who is Ibeo Automotive Systems?

Ibeo Automotive Systems GmbH is a well-established lidar hardware and software provider that was originally responsible for developing and qualifying the SCALA sensor used by premium OEMs like Audi, Mercedes, and Stellantis, among others. They have a very impressive engineering team based in Hamburg that has innovated in OEM-qualified software solutions, including auto-annotation, validation, and perception, in addition to advanced developments in software architectures required for autonomous driving, or AD, software. 

Accelerating Our Go-To-Market Strategy

Together, MicroVision’s MAVIN lidar hardware and Ibeo’s mature software will position us as a leading hardware and perception software partner to OEMs by enabling a truly complete lidar and perception software solution. MAVIN DR dynamic range lidar sensor offers the smallest form factor, highest resolution point cloud, and low latency, making it the most suitable sensor for OEM roofline deployments while Ibeo’s mature perception software, already used today by OEMs, will be ported into our digital ASIC with compatibility demonstrations available by early Q2 2023. Ibeo’s perception software has successfully passed through qualification processes with OEMs, allowing acceleration of our product path.

Bringing In Revenue

Through this acquisition, we expect revenue from hardware sales from the MAVIN sensor, Ibeo’s existing LUX sensor and its first-generation flash lidar, royalties from Ibeo’s SCALA sensor, along with Ibeo’s auto-annotation, validation, and perception software used by OEMs today. It will also:

  • Accelerate revenue streams from hardware and software products with forecasts ranging between $8 to $15 million in 2023 and expected future growth. (This range is dependent upon timing and completion of the acquisition.)
  • Efficiently address existing customer base that includes top-tier German and U.S. automotive OEMs, plus expand our multi-market strategy focusing on industrial, smart infrastructure, robotics, and commercial vehicle segments.

Advancing Relationships Within the Industry

The acquisition will allow the expansion of Ibeo’s relationship with ZF Friedrichshafen AG, an established Tier 1 partner to OEMs, to manufacture our lidar sensor. ZF has been manufacturing lidar systems on behalf of Ibeo since 2020, providing deliveries to Great Wall Motor, China’s largest SUV and pickup manufacturer. This highly automated production line has the capability to supply sensors to automotive OEMs and non-automotive customers.

Expanding Our Global Footprint

Adding Ibeo’s engineering, sales, and marketing capabilities in Germany and the United States will enhance our position as a global leader in lidar hardware and software solutions provider. The combined engineering teams in Hamburg, Nuremberg, and Redmond, Washington, will continue developing lidar hardware, perception software, ASIC, auto-annotation software, and other innovative ADAS and autonomous driving products.

Inheriting Sales and Marketing Talent

We are thrilled that this acquisition includes highly talented and experienced engineering teams, revenue-producing hardware and software businesses, and automotive-focused and multi-market business development and sales professionals. Our combined company will focus on sales of MEMS-based scanning and flash lidar hardware, as well as auto-annotation and validation software. It will also support the advanced ongoing development in sensor fusion for ADAS L3 in Redmond, Washington, and Hamburg, Germany.

In essence, this acquisition brings together the best-in-class MAVIN hardware and Ibeo’s best-in-class perception software to be integrated into our perception ASIC, accelerating the path to cost-effective, true “one box solution” required by automotive OEMs for a roofline integrated product and ready for OEMs today.

As I shared on the conference call with the investment community, we are very excited about this acquisition and what it means for MicroVision. It represents a very important move toward the strategic vision we see for the future and will help unlock incremental value for all our stakeholders.

The entire MicroVision team remains firmly committed to developing the world’s best ADAS safety technology and making it available to OEMs in ways that are cost-effective, scalable, and flexible to their specific program needs. By doing this, we will help raise the bar for automotive safety in every vehicle and for every driver. The Ibeo Automotive Systems assets MicroVision is acquiring—along with the exceptional talent—will significantly enhance and accelerate our ability to achieve that goal.

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