TOKYO, Japan – Honda R&D Co., Ltd. (Honda R&D), a research and development subsidiary of Honda, today announced that it has acquired all of the outstanding shares of the California-based Drivemode, Inc., in order to further strengthen Honda’s new value creation in the areas of digital and connected mobility products. With the acquisition, on September 26, 2019, Drivemode became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Honda R&D.
Drivemode is a startup that develops and operates smartphone-based connected services, excelling in multiple areas such as the development of the user interface and application as well as cloud-based technologies. Honda R&D and Drivemode have been collaborating and conducting joint development activities since 2015 through the Honda Xcelerator program*, an open innovation program Honda has been pursuing on a global basis*.
In April 2019, Honda newly established the Digital Solution Center within Honda R&D, which will focus on creating new value through utilization of digital technologies. With this acquisition, the Digital Solution Center and Drivemode will work together to accelerate new value creation in the area of connected mobility services, which will contribute to Honda’s vision to serve people worldwide with the “joy of expanding their life’s potential.”
“As a step toward the realization of value creation for mobility and enhancing people’s daily lives, which is an integral part of Honda’s 2030 Vision, we decided to further enhance our collaborative relationship with Drivemode,” said Toshihiro Mibe, President and Representative Director of Honda R&D. “We are confident that new value creation will become possible when Drivemode’s outstanding human resources, innovative software technologies and extensive experience as a venture company are combined with Honda’s product development technology and capability. We will strive to offer connected services which will please our customers while leveraging our respective strengths.
“Since Drivemode began working with Honda in 2015, our entire company has been inspired and impressed by the entrepreneurial spirit driving Honda’s engineering and product development. Guided by our shared culture of innovation and transformation, we are proud to join Honda as their first startup acquisition,” said Yo Koga, CEO of Drivemode. “With the support of Honda, the Drivemode team can have a lasting impact on actual vehicles and drivers around the world at scale. Our focus has always been on providing safe, meaningful software solutions for drivers, and with Honda’s hardware capabilities, we can continue innovating on mobile-based technology for connected cars and motorcycles.”
Head office: California, U.S.A.
Business: Develop and provide smartphone apps for car drivers
CEO: Yo (Yokichi) Koga
* Honda Xcelerator is an open innovation program promoting collaboration between startups and Honda. Silicon Valley-based Honda Innovations, a subsidiary of Honda R&D, has been the main driving force behind this global program.