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Process automation for highest demands: BMW Group acquires stake in Munich-based technology provider Kinexon GmbH

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26 April 2022

 

Process automation for highest demands:
BMW Group acquires stake
in Munich-based technology
provider Kinexon GmbH

  • Innovative, jointly developed software platform enables process automation in automotive manufacturing
  • Minority stake acquired through BMW i Ventures
  • Board Member for Production Nedeljković: “New standards in digital production steering”

Munich/Mountain View, California. The BMW Group has acquired a stake in its partner Kinexon. The two companies have been working together for several years in order to advance the comprehensive digitalisation of the BMW Group production network. The premium carmaker announced on Tuesday that it has now acquired a minority stake in the innovative, Munich-based software company through its own venture capital company, BMW i Ventures.

In order to improve steering of highly complex processes in automotive manufacturing, the integrated IPS-i software platform was developed in collaboration with Kinexon. This platform can record a wide variety of position data (RFID, UWB, RTLS, GPS) and transfer it into its digital twin.  On this virtual basis, the software recognizes, observes and automates a broad variety of manufacturing and logistics processes with utmost precision.

Thus, the innovative platform makes light work of keeping a digital overview of highly complex processes. In car manufacturing, some ten thousands of components have to be available at exactly the right place on the production line, right beside the tools that will be used – and all of them just in time. The new, state-of-the-art operating system orchestrates the second-by-second application accordingly.

Kinexon’s high-precision real-time locating systems are also designed for use in competitive sports and applied by numerous sport clubs of FiFA and NBA which record the movement data of athletes and their equipment through wearables. This allows the position data, tactics, movement patterns and performance of top sportspeople and entire teams to be analysed and targeted measures introduced to improve them.

 “Automotive production at the BMW Group is a lot like top-flight sport in that it’s about high-performance processes. The real-time locating platform IPS-i forms the backbone for fully digitalising our production. It’s an innovative operating system that makes our highly complex manufacturing processes transparent and raises efficiency in production even further. We are now intensifying our well-established, long-standing partnership with Kinexon by acquiring a stake in them,” said Milan Nedeljković, Board Member for Production at BMW AG. “Together, we want to set new standards in digital production steering.”

The IPS-i platform has been in use at the BMW Group since 2017 and operates in ten plants around the world. It forms the basis of numerous digitalisation projects, allowing the BMW Group – a pioneer in digital process optimisation and automation – to develop innovative production where efficiency and quality come first.

The IPS-i platform also allows logistics processes to be controlled and will be rolled out in further plants in the future. In 2021 its holistic location-based service architecture was nominated for the German Innovation Award.

The BMW Group and Kinexon GmbH have agreed not to disclose any acquisition details.

 

Kinexon GmbH

KINEXON is a global technology leader that develops groundbreaking software and connected devices for the Internet of Things (IoT). KINEXON Industries implements specialized real-time IoT solutions for Industry 4.0, in order to capture, analyze and automate manufacturing and logistics processes for industry leaders such as BMW and Continental. More than 400 teams and leagues worldwide rely on KINEXON Sports & Media in the areas of performance tracking, analytics, and fan engagement. Headquartered in Munich, Germany, KINEXON has grown to more than 300 employees across offices in Munich and Chicago. For more information, visit www.kinexon.com.

The BMW Group

With its four brands BMW, MINI, Rolls-Royce and BMW Motorrad, the BMW Group is the world’s leading premium manufacturer of automobiles and motorcycles and also provides premium financial and mobility services. The BMW Group production network comprises 31 production and assembly facilities in 15 countries; the company has a global sales network in more than 140 countries.

In 2021, the BMW Group sold over 2.5 million passenger vehicles and more than 194,000 motorcycles worldwide. The profit before tax in the financial year 2021 was € 16.1 billion on revenues amounting to € 111.2 billion. As of 31 December 2021, the BMW Group had a workforce of 118,909 employees.

The success of the BMW Group has always been based on long-term thinking and responsible action. The company set the course for the future at an early stage and consistently makes sustainability and efficient resource management central to its strategic direction, from the supply chain through production to the end of the use phase of all products.

BMW i Ventures

BMW i Ventures is the BMW Group’s venture capital firm, investing money and resources in startups in the fields of transportation, manufacturing, supply chain and sustainability. The firm has made many successful investments over the years in companies such as Chargepoint, Graphcore, Proterra, Solid Power, Tekion, Turntide, Xometry and many more. BMW i Ventures invests in all stages from seed to growth with a focus on Series A/B.

Contact BMW i Ventures:

Ann-Kathrin Marggraf  | Senior Communications Consultant PIABO 

Mobil:   +49 172 575 6287

bmwiventures@piabo.net

 

In the event of enquiries please contact BMW Group Corporate Communications:

Julian Friedrich, Head of Communications Production Network
Telephone: +49-89-382-25885

E-Mail: Julian.Friedrich@bmw.de

Britta Ullrich, Corporate Communications Finance

Telephone: +49 89 382-18364

E-Mail: britta.ullrich@bmwgroup.com

Eckhard Wannieck, Head of Corporate, Finance and Sales Communications
Telephone: +49 89 382-24544

E-Mail: eckhard.wannieck@bmwgroup.com

Internet: www.press.bmwgroup.com/deutschland

E-Mail: presse@bmw.de

www.bmwgroup.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/BMWGroup

Twitter: http://twitter.com/BMWGroup

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/BMWGroupView

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bmwgroup

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/bmw-group/

 

 

 

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Fuel consumption, CO2 emission figures and power consumption were measured using the methods required according to Regulation VO (EC) 2007/715 as amended. They refer to vehicles on the automotive market in Germany. For ranges, the NEDC figures take into account differences in the selected wheel and tyre size, while the WLTP figures take into account the effects of any optional equipment.

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