SMRT International invests $6 million in Dutch automated vehicle firm

Mr Carel van Helsdingen (left), chairman and founder of 2getthere and Mr Colin Lim, managing director of SMRT Services, unveil a replica of the Personal Rapid Transit System (PRT) during a media conference held at the Grand Hyatt Hotel on April 20, 2
Mr Carel van Helsdingen (left), chairman and founder of 2getthere and Mr Colin Lim, managing director of SMRT Services, unveil a replica of the Personal Rapid Transit System (PRT) during a media conference held at the Grand Hyatt Hotel on April 20, 2016.ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN

SINGAPORE - SMRT International, together with Abu Dhabi based United Technical Services (UTS), announced their investment in automated vehicle (AV) firm 2getthere on Thursday (June 30).

A wholly owned subsidiary of SMRT Corp, SMRT International is acquiring a 20 per cent stake worth $6 million in the Dutch company, while UTS is increasing its holding in 2getthere to 11 per cent.

"We have been working with 2getthere since 2010. We have made this investment as we are confident in 2getthere's technology and see growing demand for AVs in Asia," said SMRT International managing director Mr Goh Eng Kiat.

In April this year (2016), SMRT and 2getthere announced the formation of 2getthere Asia, a joint venture aimed at bringing driverless vehicles to Singapore and the Asia-Pacific region.

The venture is "on schedule" to trial an air-conditioned, 24-passenger driverless "pod", termed a group rapid transit (GRT) vehicle, by the end of this year.

It has also been awarded its first consultancy project to assess the feasibility of implementing a GRT system on its clients' premises in Singapore.

"The award of these projects confirms the significant potential of deploying AV systems in Singapore and beyond in the near future, " said Mr Colin Lim, director of 2getthere Asia and Managing Director of SMRT Services.