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Toyota's Koibuchi (l) and Albert's Matsumoto signed the alliance agreement (Image: Toyota)

Toyota Motor plans to invest around 400million yen in ALBERT Inc., a data solutions business. The resulting alliance for big data analysis will focus on development of automated driving technologies.

ALBERT, founded in 2005 and based in Tokyo, currently employs around 100 people. It specializes in areas including the development of analysis algorithms and system introduction; supporting the use of AI; products and services using machine learning; and supporting the discipline of data science. It has recently been working on analysis of imagery in relation to automated driving.

Ken Koibuchi, executive general manager in charge of developing automated driving at Toyota’s advanced R&D and engineering division, said in a statement: “We believe that AI technologies are indispensable for achieving our vision of ‘safe and smooth mobility for all people’. To bring out the full performance of AI technologies, it is necessary to skilfully manage large volumes of data.

And he added that he expects the alliance to accelerate Toyota’s development of automated driving technologies.

Takeshi Matsumoto, president of ALBERT, said: “For technological innovation, such as in the development of automated driving technologies, to be fully implemented in society and be able to create new value, advanced analytical capacity centered on AI and machine learning, and data scientists who pursue realization of this, are essential."

-Farah Alkhalisi

(Editor's note: Powell Kinney, chief product owner of Toyota's Mobility Services Platform, is one of the featured speakers at the automotiveIT International conference in Atlanta May 21-23. For more information, please go to www.automotiveITconference.com