Schaeffler has launched a new initiative to search for the most innovative start-ups in the areas of Robotics and Urban Mobility by hosting the first “Technology Partnering Asia Pacific 2019” at its regional research and development center in Yokohama, Japan. The event being held from June 4-5, 2019 is the final stage after the two-month application and review process. Schaeffler received 46 applications from start-up companies across 20 countries and it has shortlisted 15 projects for the selection process during the event.
A Global Innovation Hub For Urban Mobility And Robotics
Schaeffler views the diverse and growing region of Asia Pacific as the living lab for research and development for its focus areas of urban mobility and robotics. The company has designated Schaeffler Asia Pacific as the global innovation hub for these focus areas. “Yokohama R&D Center is the biggest R&D facility in the region with over 125 research engineers with extensive knowledge and experience for robotics, e-mobility and urban mobility. These areas are closely linked to the Schaeffler Group strategy—“Mobility for tomorrow”. This event creates a unique opportunity to explore creative ideas and build new partnerships that develop technologies of the future,” said Dr. Tomas Smetana, Chief Technology Officer at Schaeffler Asia Pacific.
It is a step further from the company’s long-standing research collaboration with universities across the region. With the aim to deepen this partnership and explore new research areas in the field of urban mobility, in 2017 the company set-up the Schaeffler Hub for Advanced Research (SHARE) at the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.
Beginning As A Start-Up
Schaeffler knows the great potential offered by young companies with convincing business ideas. The company began as a start-up itself more than 70 years ago. In 1946, Dr. Wilhelm Schaeffler and his brother Dr.-Ing. E.h. Georg Schaeffler started the Industrie GmbH in an old airman’s barracks in Herzogenaurach. Georg Schaeffler had the ground-breaking idea for a cage-guided needle roller bearing in 1949. The INA needle roller cage was patented in 1950 and has been an indispensable component for vehicle manufacturing, mechanical engineering, and plant construction since then.
Finalists Pitching For Projects In Four Technological Focus Areas
Schaeffler is looking for partnering with startups for four focus areas: i) Mobile Platforms, ii) Robot Arms, iii) Control & Perception, and iv) Energy Solutions. The 15 startups, who were shortlisted for new ideas in these areas, will participate in the final selection process which will include a 10-minute pitch presentation, Q&A and roundtable discussions with an audience comprising Schaeffler experts from around the world. “Our aim is to find the startups that will become Schaeffler’s new partners to develop new, sustainable technological solutions for our automotive and industrial customers,” said Prof. Tim Hosenfeld, Senior Vice President Technology Strategy & Innovation at Schaeffler AG.
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