GPS Giant Garmin Buys South African Bike Technology Startup

GPS Giant Garmin Buys South African Bike Technology Startup

Garmin, a Nasdaq-listed maker of GPS equipment found in cars all over the world, has bought a Stellenbosch company that makes technology for bicycle safety.

Stellenbosch-based iKubu specializes in computer vision and radar systems, MoneyWeb reports. The South African company went through the Grindstone accelerator program operated by JSE-listed African Dawn Capital before being bought by Garmin.

Founded in the U.S., Garmin is now headquartered in Switzerland. Attracting a foreign investor of Garmin’s stature to South Africa’s local technology scene will give other players incentive to pursue scalable global technology offerings, the report said.

iKubu found a way to implement short-range radar into a low-power system that addresses a common concern among cyclists – identifying potential hazards that are approaching them from behind, according to Cliff Pemble, Garmin president and CEO, MoneyWeb reported.

Garmin will give iKubu the resources to develop, bring to market, and showcase its products that it would otherwise not have had, said iKubu managing director Franz Struwig.

“Garmin is a technological leader among cyclists, and we are looking forward to integrating our technology and expertise into their outstanding products,” Struwig said.The low-energy radar mounts on the back of the bike, and wireless data is sent to a device mounted on the bike’s handlebars, according to VentureBeat . The device can detect cars approaching from behind at a distance of […]

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