Schaeffler has opened an office in Silicon Valley, hoping to foster tighter relationships with the regional high-tech industry as the auto industry changes.

The large German automotive supplier said the San Jose office will work with start-ups and other technology partners to improve existing products and define and develop new tools and methods.

Philip George, who is in charge of regional innovation and will run the new office, said the facility will help Schaeffler better cater to changing customer requirements.

“With its close proximity to tech-driven companies and start-ups, our new Silicon Valley facility enables us to not only stay current with transformational technology trends created in this region, but to become an active partner to the companies driving these trends,” George said in a press release.

Schaeffler, like most automotive suppliers, is repositioning and adapting its products to keep them in line with trends in the auto industry, including Industry 4.0, the Internet of Things, big data, cloud analytics and new business models.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Schaeffler Group Americas CIO Shoukat Ali Bhamani will be a featured speaker at the automotiveIT International conference in Atlanta May 21-23. For more information, please go to: www.automotiveITconference.com