Denso International America plans to expand its Silicon Valley office to better support startup companies and R&D in cyber security, big data, and autonomous driving, the Southfield-based automotive supplier announced Wednesday.
“Our intention is to leverage the creative talent in Silicon Valley to quickly bring new technologies to the automotive industry,” says Roger Berg, vice president of North American R&D for Denso’s Silicon Valley office. “To do that we need some of our advanced R&D facilities to be located where the expertise lies.”
Berg says the expansion is part of the company’s plan to invest nearly $1 billion and create more than 2,000 jobs in North America by 2016. In turn, GM, Ford and other Michigan-based companies have established or expanded operations in Silicon Valley in recent years.
Denso first opened its northern California office in 2011 with the intention of growing both its automotive and non-automotive businesses. The company plans to further expand its investments into startups in the health and medical, security, power storage, electric mobility, sensors, and biotechnology fields.
“Over the next 20 years, the nature of the automobile will undergo a revolutionary change,” says Tony Cannestra, director of innovation for the Silicon Valley office. “Denso is committed to supporting, and investing in new advanced technologies that will become the foundation of the next generation automobile. We believe that many of those technologies will be created in startup companies by innovative entrepreneurs focused on bringing advancements to the market quickly.”