September 12, 2014 / 3:40 PM / 4 years ago

Porsche SE takes stake in traffic intelligence company Inrix

FRANKFURT, Sept 12 (Reuters) - Porsche Automobil Holding SE , the investment company which owns a majority stake in Volkswagen, on Friday said it had bought a 10 percent stake in Inrix, a U.S.-based firm specialised in analysing crowd-sourced traffic information.

Porsche SE bought the stake for around $55 million, the latest move in a trend by Germany’s car industry to gain expertise in software-based and technology businesses.

Last week, Stuttgart-based rival Daimler bought mytaxi and RideScout, two smartphone applications that will help the maker of Mercedes-Benz limousines provide services to people who do not own cars.

Inrix combines data from connected cars, trucks and smartphones to help transport agencies analyse traffic flow data, and to help them react to accidents and unplanned road closures.

Inrix, based in Kirkland, Washington, has built up a network in 40 countries, including Russia, China, Brazil, Singapore, and the United Arab Emirates, which allows it to calculate detailed traffic speeds every 10 metres across 4 million miles of road.

Porsche Automobil Holding SE, an investment vehicle controlled by the Porsche and Piech families, has been on the lookout for investments since it sold its Porsche sportscar business to Volkswagen in 2012. (Reporting by Edward Taylor; Editing by Mark Potter)

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