The well-known mobile communication company Vodafone is aiming to tap into the lucrative electronics services for the car industry through a deal with an Italian supplier.
Vodafone, a British telecoms company, announced today it signed an agreement to purchase an Italian provider of electronics services that deals with the auto industry – aiming to snatch a share of the growing connected devices segment, which could encompass millions of cars and other machines.
Cobra Automotive Technologies, which deals with security, telecommunications and vehicle tracking, has been bought by Vodafone for 145 million euros ($197 million). This is a normal move in recent years by mobile operators, which have been seeking to move their strategy to cover the sector of machine-to-machine (M2M) connectivity, which covers the healthcare, automotive, transportation and energy industries.
“The combination of Vodafone and Cobra will create a new global provider of connected car services,” Erik Brenneis, Director of M2M at Vodafone said. “We plan to invest in the business to offer our automotive and insurance customers a full range of telematics services.”
Cobra’s majority shareholder Intek Group also announced in a statement it agreed to Vodafone’s offer of 1.49 euros a share, opting to sell its 51.4 % controlling stake for 74.3 million euros. The M2M sector seems to be a major battlefield for mobile operators, with the applications for the industry ranging from remote home energy monitoring to the future of car-to-car communication, seen by many as a way of providing increased security and safety in the future.