US chipmaker Intel has announced a $15.3 billion takeover of driverless car tech firm Mobileye. Intel will pay $63.54 a share for the Israeli company, whose ascendance in the autonomous driving industry has become one of the success stories of the past few years.
Intel, which values the burgeoning industry at $70bn by 2020, was already working alongside Mobileye and German automaker BMW to put 40 driverless cars on the road by the end of this year.
As “cars progress from assisted driving to fully autonomous, they are increasingly becoming data centers on wheels,” wrote an Intel company statement. The Santa Clara, CA-based firm expects that, by 2020, driverless cars will generate four terabytes of data each day.
The news is another big boost for Israel’s world-renowned tech industry, which has driven its reputation as a ‘Startup Nation’. Mobileye’s price blows last year’s entire Israeli exit figure of $10.02bn away–and is yet another example of deep cooperation between its key players and foreign multinationals, especially in the US.
Founded in 1999, Mobileye was a Red Herring Top 100 recipient in 2004. Last year its revenues tripled to $358m. Red Herring recently reported on its collaboration with Indian self-drive rental company Zoomcar. Now, it is Mobileye that has been snapped up for a huge sum.