Japanese rubber/plastics auto parts manufacturer Toyoda Gosei Co. will establish a corporate venture capital department in January 2019. This new department will serve as the company’s centre for investment in start-ups and venture capital to accelerate open innovations for practical application and commercialisation of new technologies and products.
Toyoda Gosei formulated its medium and long-term business plan, the 2025 Business Plan, in May 2018 as a guide to acting in a dramatically changing business environment. In a key area of activities in the plan, “Venture into Innovation and New Mobility,” the company is developing e-Rubber, a next-generation artificial muscle for robots and other applications, modular automotive products with human-machine interface functionality that will serve as a bridge between humans and automobiles in autonomous driving, and other new technologies and products.
In order to commercialise them, the venture capital department will look at investing in start-ups that are promising for synergy with Toyoda Gosei’s core technologies. The department will have an operating budget of 3 billion yen, and will invest it for a period of two years starting in January 2019.