Volvo launches investment fund for tech startups

Zaki Fasihuddin has been named CEO of the tech fund.

In a quest to integrate new technologies into its products and experiences, Volvo Cars has launched a venture capital fund to take stakes in innovative startups targeting trends that are shaping the industry.

The Volvo Cars Tech Fund will invest in startups geared toward “artificial intelligence, electrification, autonomous driving and digital mobility services,” the company said Wednesday in a statement.

“By supporting promising young firms at the forefront of technological development and providing them with both capital and strategic value, we aim to strengthen our leading role in the industry’s technological transformation,” Zaki Fasihuddin, vice president of strategic partnerships at the Volvo Cars Silicon Valley Technology Center, said in a statement. Fasihuddin has been named CEO of the tech fund.

The Swedish company’s first investment is a seed round investment in a California technology firm that develops “advanced sensors,” the company said.

“Volvo is open to invest in interesting startups both in early and later stages. We are stage-agnostic,” a company representative wrote in an email. “The tech fund is available for investments to be made globally.”

Several automakers, such as BMW AG and Toyota Motor Corp., have set up similar funds. BMW and Toyota this week announced a seed investment in May Mobility, a startup in Ann Arbor, Mich., that is developing self-driving shuttles.

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