DENSO International America, Inc. has entered into an investment agreement with THINCI Inc., an innovative deep-learning, vision processing startup developing innovative machine learning technology that enables the application of deep learning and vision processing in the automotive industry. With this investment, DENSO is looking to accelerate the final development and integration of THINCI’s innovative silicon and software technology into electronic systems that help enable driver assistance and autonomous driving, improve the efficiency of thermal systems, and optimize the productivity of the vehicle’s powertrain.
“DENSO has been researching new developments in the area of computer vision processing. We strongly believe that THINCI’s technology will soon become a key component of next generation autonomous driving systems that require advanced computing techniques combined with deep learning capabilities,” said Tony Cannestra, DENSO International America’s Director of Corporate Ventures. “DENSO looks forward to supporting THINCI ‘s technology development and working with our OEM customers to deploy this technology into the automotive industry for autonomous drive.”
THINCI Inc. is a venture-backed, deep-learning vision processing start-up based in El Dorado Hills, Calif., with teams in California and Hyderabad, India. THINCI’s technology can be integrated into a wide range of applications, including advanced driver assistance systems in automobiles, personal electronics and smart home automation systems. THINCI developed a silicon architecture capable of processing extremely large amounts of data as fast as a human would, as well as the software infrastructure needed for the silicon to process this data. THINCI’s deep learning and vision processing replicates human vision.
“We are thrilled DENSO is our lead investor,” said THINCI CEO Dinakar Munagala. “The automotive industry is one of the earliest adopters of vision processing and deep learning technology. DENSO’s investment in THINCI’s trailblazing solution confirms our own belief that our innovation has much to offer, not only in the automobile but in the wide range of everyday products.”
DENSO Corp., headquartered in Kariya, Aichi prefecture, Japan, is a leading global automotive supplier of advanced technology, systems and components in the areas of thermal, powertrain control, electronics and information and safety. Its customers include all the world’s major carmakers. Worldwide, the company has more than 200 subsidiaries and affiliates in 38 countries and regions and employs nearly 140,000 people. Consolidated global sales for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2014, totaled US$39.8 billion. Last fiscal year, DENSO spent 9 percent of its global consolidated sales on research and development. DENSO common stock is traded on the Tokyo and Nagoya stock exchanges.
Currently in North America, DENSO employs more than 17,000 people at 32 consolidated companies and affiliates. Of these, 28 are manufacturing facilities located in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. In the U.S. alone, DENSO employs more than 14,000 people in California, Michigan, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, Iowa, Ohio, Alabama and Arkansas. DENSO’s North American consolidated sales totaled US$7.9 billion for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2014.
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