Toyota’s Woven Planet to acquire U.S. digital mapping specialist

The Toyota unit said the deal will strengthen its ability to map a full set of different road classes and features “reflecting changes in lane markings, traffic signals, signs and more in near real-time, and support its future multi-regional commercial launch.”

Toyota rechristened its autonomous driving and software subsidiary Woven Planet in January, but its operations launched in 2018 when it was founded as the Toyota Research Institute – Advanced Development.

Woven Planet consists of four group companies, including Woven Capital, which is brimming with $800 million to invest over the next 10 years in cutting-edge technology. Woven Core focuses on automated driving. Woven Alpha pioneers new businesses in such fields as connectivity, onboard software and high-definition mapping. And Woven Planet Holdings oversees the group.

Carmera will report through Woven Alpha’s Automated Mapping Platform. Other projects at Woven Alpha are the Woven City smart community and the Arene open automotive operating system that will allow for “programmable cars.”

The Automated Mapping Platform strives to become “the most globally comprehensive” road- and lane–mapping system, offering precise, localized maps to automated vehicles. Acquiring Carmera gives the Japanese company a head start in the especially important U.S. market.

“With Carmera joining the team, we’ll be able to hit the accelerator,” Mandali Khalesi, Woven Planet’s vice president of automated driving strategy and mapping, said in a release.

“Their world-class experts will allow us to bring forward the execution of key strategic milestones and jumpstart operations in the United States,” Khalesi said.

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