The automotive industry is being disrupted by three simultaneous revolutions: electrified powertrains, the rise of autonomous vehicles and the digital revolution, which gives rise to new forms of mobility. Having chosen early on to place innovation at the heart of its strategy, Valeo now positions itself at the heart of these disruptions. In 2017, our Group fully intends to maintain its lead position, evidenced by the 1.6 billion euros invested last year in research and development and the 1,800 patents filed worldwide, making Valeo the top French patent filer in the European Patent Office ranking.
New competencies are required to win the innovation race, which is why we are focusing especially on artificial intelligence, deep learning and cybersecurity. These are all vital elements in the development of tomorrow’s autonomous and connected vehicles. In June of last year, we announced the launch of Valeo.ai in Paris, the first global research center dedicated to these two disciplines for automotive applications.
Attracting new talent and developing specialized training programs is important for Valeo, so it was natural to partner with Telecom Paris on the Cybersecurity for Connected Cars Chair. The Chair’s goals are very much in line with our open-innovation policy. Our company connects with the academic and scientific communities, as well as with startups, with a view to jointly developing innovative solutions for the automotive industry.
In 2016, the Group generated sales of €16.5 billion and invested over 11% of its original equipment sales in research and development. Valeo employs 100,900 people in 32 countries, in 166 plants, 20 research centers, 38 development centers and 15 distribution platforms. Valeo is listed on the Paris stock exchange and is a member of the CAC 40 index.