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Samsung is buying Harman to strengthen its connected-car activities (Photo: Harman)

Samsung said it plans to acquire Harman International for 8 billion dlrs in cash, giving the Korean electronics giant a bigger stake in the global connected car market.

"Upon closing, the transaction will immediately give Samsung  significant presence in the large and rapidly growing market for connected technologies, particularly automotive electonics, which has been a strategic priority for Samsung," the company said in a press release.

About 65 pc of Harman's annual sales of roughly 7 billion dlrs are automotive-related. The company has a big presence in connected car and audio systems, including embedded infotainment and telematics.

“Harman perfectly complements Samsung in terms of technologies, products and solutions," Samsung Electronics CEO Oh-Hyun Kwon said in a statement. And Young Sohn, the company's chief strategy officer, added: “The vehicle of tomorrow will be transformed by smart technology and connectivity in the same way that simple feature phones have become sophisticated smart devices over the past decade."

Harman will operate as a standalone subsidiary of Samsung once the transaction closes. That is expected to happen in mid-2017.

Samsung said Harman CEO Dinesh Paliwal and the current management team will stay on to run the company.