EIB gives EUR 20 mln loan to AImotive


The European Investment Bank has announced it is providing a loan of EUR 20 million to Hungarian tech company AImotive, for the research and development of innovative AI-based systems for self-driving cars, according to a press release sent to the Budapest Business Journal.

The Hungarian companyʼs AI technology aims at reducing cost and increasing safety of self-driving vehicles.

"This is a great day for the EIB, as we are laying a cornerstone for European leadership in the field of artificial intelligence," says vice president of the EIB Vazil Hudak. "I am glad we are doing this in Central Europe where the automotive industry has a long history of success. With projections showing as much as 13-20 million self-driving cars potentially on the roads in Europe and North America by 2035, we have to make sure Europe has the capacity to lead this global revolution in automotive industry and we are proud to be a part of that drive!"

The EIB loan is backed by the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), which forms the heart of the Investment Plan for Europe (known as the Juncker Plan), and will allow the 200-strong company to scale up operations in the rapidly evolving autonomous driving segment and expand its customer base of OEMs, Tier1s and mobility services companies.

With the help of the loan, AImotiveʼs goal is to mature its technology and put safe, automotive level versions of its products on the market. These include a modular, AI-based software for self-driving cars, as well as a virtual simulation environment to help accelerate the test and verification of self-driving technologies. Furthermore, AImotive also has a chip IP for high-performance, low-power AI-optimized computing.

"AImotive is working in a highly competitive industry that will experience huge changes in the coming years," says the companyʼs CEO László Kishonti.

"AImotive encourages broader collaboration and open development within industry players to accelerate such changes and bring safe products to market soon. The EIB investment will support our efforts to mature AImotive’s ecosystem of self-driving technologies and become a leading platform of the automated driving industry.”

European Commission Vice President for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness Jyrki Katainen adds: "Artificial intelligence is no science fiction: it is already part of our everyday life and it is a hallmark of the new industrial age."

He adds: "For European businesses to compete on the global stage in this field we need more research and development, more take up and diffusion of technologies and this means naturally more private and public investments. This agreement shows that the Investment Plan for Europe can fully play its part in this endeavor."

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