Honda Innovations launches start-up collaboration programme in Europe
- US-based Honda Innovations expands its engagement of the start-up ecosystem to global R&D sites including Europe
- Initiative supports start-ups and entrepreneurs developing transformative products and services in mobility
Honda Innovations is expanding its support programme for early stage start-up businesses to Honda offices outside the US for the first time. Modelled on its successful Honda Xcelerator programme in Mountain View, California, the expanded initiative will now support selected start-ups through collaborations with Honda in Europe.
Established in 2015, the Honda Xcelerator programme is committed to supporting the creation of transformative products and services through open innovation, and includes the provision of funding for rapid prototyping and access to a collaborative workspace, as well as providing the start-ups with Honda mentors. It focuses on businesses operating in energy innovation, human machine interface, personal mobility, industrial innovation, autonomous vehicles, artificial intelligence, smart materials, and robotics.
Throughout the programme, Honda Innovations will guide the new operation from Germany, covering Europe – as well as other newly established start-up outreach initiatives in Detroit, Japan, and China – as they establish relationships with candidate start-up innovators. It will provide each new satellite operation with protocols and best practices to identify and engage with start-ups and entrepreneurs who share Honda’s vision for transforming mobility.
By engaging more deeply with the start-up communities in these regions, the aim is to create win-win opportunities for collaborations between top innovators and Honda.
Nick Sugimoto, Honda Innovations CEO, said, “The pace of innovation is increasing with the rapid expansion of the global start-up community, and has the potential to help Honda transform its future products, services and business opportunities. With our expanded collaboration in Detroit, Japan, China and Europe, Honda will be in an even stronger position to discover emerging technologies and establish partnerships to help create new value for our customers.”
Examples of Honda Xcelerator Partnerships
At CES 2017, Honda Xcelerator showcased its start-up collaborations with partners, LEIA 3D and VocalZoom. In partnership with LEIA 3D, Honda developed a driver’s instrumentation display using nano-technology that can provide three-dimensional images, switching seamlessly between different viewing angles for warnings and driver-assistive systems. Honda also collaborated with VocalZoom to apply its optical microphone technology to enhance the in-car experience by improving voice interaction inside the vehicle at CES 2017.
Honda Xcelerator will introduce its new start-up collaborations at CES 2018. Honda previously established partnerships with incubators MassChallenge (Boston, Massachusetts), Drive (Tel Aviv, Israel), and equity crowd funding platform OurCrowd (Jerusalem, Israel) to support outreach to start-ups in key innovation hubs globally.