Continental AG and Osram Licht AG have successfully set up a joint venture company to target the growing market for intelligent automotive lighting solutions.
Set to start in the second half of the year, the 50:50 JV, Osram Continental GmbH, will aim to combine semiconductor-based lighting modules, advanced electronics, optics and software expertise with access to sensor technology.
Currently based in Munich, Osram Continental will initially employ 1,500 people at 16 global locations.
The plan is to move the headquarters to Garching, Germany “in due course”, the two companies announced 3 July. The first products to be developed by the joint venture are expected to be ready for series production by 2021.
Osram would be transferring its automotive Solid State Lighting (SSL) module business over to the joint venture while the Hanover-based Continental would be incorporating its light control business from the Body & Security business unit.
The JV will produce intelligent solutions for headlamps, tail and interior lighting.
With strong growth in the market for LED and laser-based lighting modules, the newly-formed business anticipates achieving double-digit growth rates annually for the next five years.
Dirk Linzmeier will take the helm as the CEO of Osram Continental.
The two companies announced their plans for the multi-million-euro JV in November last year and since then, according to Linzmeier, have been working on areas that will allow the new company to “rethink the future of automotive lighting.”
According to Continental, the market for automotive lighting is now transitioning towards semiconductor-based lighting technologies, making software and electronics increasingly important and influential.
Among others, the company will look into developing intelligent lighting functions, that can, for instance, send warning messages to other road users.
A recent market study projected a staggering 20.9% CAGR growth rate for global automotive LED lighting market.
The report, published 3 July by Dublin-based publisher Research and Markets, named lower costs as a driver influencing the growth.
The use of LED lighting systems for automotive cabin lighting, claimed the report, has reduced the total power consumed by automotive lighting by more than 80% in comparison to halogen and xenon lighting systems.