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OEMTechnologyTrucking

Volvo Ventures invests in cybersecurity startup to protect its connected trucks

Swedish truck maker follows Daimler in creating autonomous transportation group

Volvo Group Venture Capital is investing in an Israeli automotive cybersecurity startup to help protect its one million “connected assets,” which it claims exceeds any competitor.

Volvo participated in a $30 million Series B fundraising round for Tel Aviv-based Upstream Security led by Renault Venture Capital, Hyundai, Hyundai AutoEver, Nationwide Ventures and others.  

Unbounded ambition

‘“Our mission is to protect every connected vehicle and smart mobility service on the planet,” said Yoav Levy, Upstream Security co-founder and CEO.

Upstream will use the funds to develop data-driven, cloud-based systems designed to protect connected vehicles from cyber threats or misuse while stationary and in motion. 

The trucking industry and its supply chain rank fifth among all businesses at risk of cybersecurity attacks as the number of possible threats against the transportation sector has grown 100-fold in just four years, according to cyber experts.

The investment results from Volvo Group’s partnership in DRIVE, an innovation center focused on disruptive start-ups in the Israeli mobility sector. 

“Upstream Security has a promising offering and capability to support with cybersecurity solutions to meet our future requirements,” said Anna Westerberg, acting CEO of Volvo Group Venture Capital and senior vice president, Volvo Group Connected Solutions.

Less attention

Volvo North America President Peter Voorhoeve said connectivity gets less attention than flashier technologies like electromobility and automation, but it is just as important. 

“That is how we secure more uptime. That is how we coach fleets and drivers that something in your truck needs to be replaced,” Voorhoeve said during a press conference at the recent American Truck Associations’ Management Conference & Exhibition. 

“I think we can clearly say that with all the assets we have on the road we are truly leading in this area.”

Of Volvo Group’s one million “connected assets,” 200,000 are trucks in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, Voorhoeve said.

Autonomous Solutions Group

Separately, Volvo Group will form Volvo Autonomous Solutions in January 2020 to accelerate the development, commercialization and sales of autonomous transport solutions such as the mining, ports and transport between logistics centers it is already testing. 

The move follows a similar action by AB Volvo’s major competitor Daimler AG, which established an autonomous trucking group in May of this year. Volvo is looking for a leader for the group, which will report profits and losses as part of the Truck segment.

“With the Volvo Group’s wide range of offerings and broad experience of different applications, we have a unique opportunity to offer solutions that meet their specific needs,” said Martin Lundstedt,  AB Volvo president and CEO. Customer inquiries are on the rise, he said.

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Alan Adler

Alan Adler is a Detroit-based award-winning journalist who worked for The Associated Press, the Detroit Free Press and most recently as Detroit Bureau Chief for Trucks.com. He also spent two decades in domestic and international media relations and executive communications with General Motors.

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