TomTom acquires German autonomous driving technology startup Autonomos


Netherlands-based mapping, navigation and traffic information provider TomTom has announced that it has acquired Autonomos, a German autonomous driving technology startup, in order to strengthen its position in the field of self-driving systems.

Based in Berlin, Germany, Autonomos is a high-tech startup providing software and services for autonomous driving, as well as customizable safety and automation solutions for heavy duty vehicles. Established in 2012, Autonomos was founded by former members of the intelligent systems workgroup at the Free University of Berlin, one of the leading robotics laboratories in Germany, where under the name Autonomos-Labs, the team became well known for its pioneering experiments with self-driving-cars around the world. With financial support from the IBB (Investitionbank of Berlin) and Alubi Capital, Autonomos has grown independently to a team of over 30 highly qualified software engineers, operating in Berlin and Frankfurt.

Autonomos is currently engaged with OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers to foster highly automated driving functions, and help with the testing of advanced prototypes on the roads. The company has provided research and development consultancy services for automated vehicle assistance systems, and has built up expertise and technologies in the process. Autonomos projects and capabilities include: 3D vision assistance systems for special purpose vehicles, such as refuse trucks; development of the Smart Stereo Camera, a fully-integrated, real-time-capable system for 3D object recognition; a full demonstration-level autonomous driving software stack; and 3D sensor technology and digital image processing systems. As a member of the ERTIC-ITS Europe coordinated Advanced Driver Assistance Systems consortium (ADASIS), the company contributes to shape the standards for future HD-mapping technologies for autonomous driving.

With the acquisition of Autonomos, TomTom is joined by a team that traces its lineage back to the US Defense Department’s DARPA Grand Challenge competitions. The team will advance TomTom’s map-based products for autonomous driving applications. Having an in-house autonomous driving stack will enable TomTom to better serve customers with its products, including its HD Map and RoadDNA localization technology, as well as its navigation, traffic information, and other cloud services.

“This is an important development for us, as it will help us to continue to strengthen our capabilities for the future of driving and expand our knowledge and expertise,” said Harold Goddijn, CEO and co-founder of TomTom. “With this deal we are further positioning ourselves as one of the leaders in autonomous driving.”

Tinosch Ganjineh, CEO and co-founder of Autonomos, commented, “We are proud to have been selected by the world leader in map making for bringing autonomous driving together to the next level. TomTom’s technology, combined with our intelligent driving know-how, are a perfect match to make the dream of self-driving cars become a reality.”

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About Author


Tom has edited Traffic Technology International (TTi) magazine and its Traffic Technology Today website since May 2014. During his time at the title, he has interviewed some of the top transportation chiefs at public agencies around the world as well as CEOs of leading multinationals and ground-breaking start-ups. Tom's earlier career saw him working on some the UK's leading consumer magazine titles. He has a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).