Magna to buy Veoneer Active Safety for $1.53 bln to bolster self-driving tech

Magna logo is during Munich Auto Show, IAA Mobility 2021 in Munich, Germany, September 8, 2021. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay

Dec 20 (Reuters) - Canadian auto parts maker Magna International Inc (MG.TO) said on Tuesday it had agreed to buy Veoneer Active Safety business from investment firm SSW Partners for $1.53 billion in cash to bolster its portfolio of self-driving technology.

A push to incorporate assistive-driving capabilities to bolster safety features in cars has led to greater adoption of self-driving technology with auto suppliers vying to meet the requirements.

However, fully self-driving systems still face regulatory scrutiny among safety concerns. Earlier this year, Ford Motor Co (F.N) and Volkswagen AG (VOWG_p.DE) shuttered its self-driving startup Argo AI underscoring the growing realization that automated vehicles may be even further away from mass deployment than industry executives predicted back in 2019.

Magna Electronics, which develops technologies for automated driving and vehicle electrification, and Veoneer is projected to have advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) sales of about $1.8 billion in 2022, about $3 billion in 2024.

Veoneer Active Safety sales are projected to be about $1.1 billion in 2022 and increase to about $1.9 billion in 2024.

Veoneer Active Safety systems provides early warnings to alert drivers to prevent accidents by using features such as autonomous emergency braking, forward collision warning, blind spot detection.

The deal is expected to add to Magna's sensor and full systems capabilities, including radar, camera and driver monitoring, and add 2,200 engineers for systems, software and sensor development.

Magna had tried to buy Veoneer last year but was trumped by SSW and Qualcomm (QCOM.O) who were vying for the company's expertise in making ADAS.

The deal is expected to close near mid-year 2023.

Reporting by Kannaki Deka in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri

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