Ford Smart Mobility, a division of Ford Motor Co. in Dearborn, has announced it acquired Journey Holding Corp. in Salt Lake City to better deliver integrated solutions that support cities and their transportation systems. In turn, the automaker acquired Quantum Signal, a mobile robotics firm in Saline.
Over the past few years, Ford has been assembling a team of mobility experts in software development, simulation, and machine learning as it seeks to accelerate autonomous vehicle development.
In January, Journey Holding was formed with the merger of Ride Systems in Salt Lake City and DoubleMap Inc. in Indianapolis. Journey is considered among the largest intelligent transportation system providers in North America.
It provides a portfolio of technology offerings among more than 700 locations that includes public transit riders and automatic vehicle location services to municipalities, universities, airports, hospitals, and corporate fleets.
Going forward, Journey will integrate its offerings with Ford Smart Mobility’s TransLoc, a provider of technology solutions for on-demand and fixed route systems for public and private transit operations. Journey Holding CEO Justin Rees will lead the new operation. The name of the combined organization will be announced at a later date. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
“The combination of these transit technology companies will accelerate our efforts to help cities deliver more seamless, productive, and accessible transportation solutions to their citizens and visitors,” says Brett Wheatley, vice president Ford Mobility Marketing and Growth. “It also will be key to connecting customers with the other mobility solutions in our portfolio, such as Spin e-scooters and our GoRide Health service.”
Together, Journey and TransLoc serve nearly 1,200 cities, universities, corporate campuses, and other enterprises with software solutions for fixed route transportation, micro-transit on-demand transportation, and other related areas.
“The need for safe and seamless transportation is critical in our cities globally,” says Rees. “Together, we will be able to offer transit leaders globally a full suite of services backed by the credibility and commitment of Ford Motor Co.”
Other members of the new company’s leadership team include:
- Scott Lacy, vice president of Product
- Ron Cygnarowicz, vice president of Customers
- Ilya Rekhter, vice president of Growth
- Kevin Fowler, vice president of Finance
- Katie Strickland, vice president of People
- Peter SerVaas,vice president of Innovation
- Kelly Rees, vice president of Integration
TransLoc CEO Doug Kaufman will leave the transit technology company on Aug. 16.
Founded in 1999, Quantum Signal has helped the military develop software that allowed it to remotely control robotic vehicles from thousands of miles away. It also built a robust simulation environment capable of testing autonomous vehicle designs that’s still in use today.
With the acquisition of Quantum Signal, Ford will make use of its experience in real-time simulation and algorithm development, as well as robotics, sensing, and perception technology.
The wide range of the group’s work portfolio means it will be able to support Ford in numerous areas as the company develops self-driving vehicles and transportation as a service business, including software development and hardware prototyping.