It’s clear that automotive is on the radar of tech companies as smartphone demand cools. In October, Qualcomm, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) bought NXP Semiconductors NV (NASDAQ:NXPI), the world’s largest producer of chips for the automotive industry. In November, Samsung (OTCMKTS:SSNLF) purchased Harman International Industries Inc (NYSE:HAR), a leader in connected car technology. About then, Siemens AG (ADR) (OTCMKTS:SIEGY) purchased industrial design software firm Mentor Graphics Corp (NASDAQ:MENT) for $4.5 billion. Mentor produces software used to design electronics for industrial and automotive applications.
This continued in December. Blackberry Ltd (NASDAQ:BBRY), having recently quit the smartphone business, recently turned to autonomous cars. And Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) released a letter detailing its interest in cars as well.
The consulting firm Roland Berger forecast that the market for assisted driving components will quintuple by 2025, and expects further M&A activity. Producers of high-tech components for connected and autonomous cars will be in the crosshairs of two major sectors: the auto industry and tech.
Bloomberg sees electronics companies such LG and Panasonic Corporation (ADR) (OTCMKTS:PCRFY) making similar moves to get into car tech. And Citi, in its Car of the Future v3.0 report, notes that automakers such as General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) and Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) are boosting their in-house tech via M&A. In March, GM bought Cruise, a maker of autonomous car technology. In August, Ford acquired SAIPS, an Israel firm focusing on machine learning and computer vision.
Investors can grab these auto stocks to prepare their portfolios for the future of cars.