German parts supplier Benteler is establishing a new brand – Holon – which will focus on fully electric, autonomous movers.
The move is also a change of name for the Benteler EV Systems business unit, which was spun off at the end of 2021.
Ralf Göttel, Benteler Group CEO, said: “Mobility around the world is undergoing rapid change. Benteler is optimally prepared for this – 85% of our products are independent of the type of drive. In parallel with the traditional automotive business, innovative, digitally connected, and autonomous mobility services promise high growth in the coming years. With our engineering and manufacturing expertise, we are predestined to fill a gap in this hitherto strongly software-dominated field. By founding Holon, an independent legal entity, we can react flexibly to changing customer requirements in this dynamic market. In this way, we will make the best possible use of growth opportunities.”
The term Holon comes from the Greek language and means “something that is both a whole and a part of a whole”. The company also says the future orientation of the brand is also reflected in the new brand’s slogan: Holon – Established Tomorrow.
The new brand’s next milestone is the CES 2023 trade show in Las Vegas. It is claimed Holon will present the world’s first autonomous mover that meets automotive standards there.
In the development and deployment of the autonomous mover, Holon says it has worked closely with various partners, including the Italian design company Pininfarina, the mobility provider Beep, and Mobileye, an Intel company.
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While Mobileye is developing the self-driving system for the autonomous mover, Beep is adding technologies and services for the deployment and operating systems of a mobility service. Pininfarina designed the autonomous mover. Holon is responsible for the development and production of the mover within the cooperation. The shuttles are scheduled to go into production in the United States starting in 2025.
Areas of application and thus customers are not only public transport companies, but also municipalities and private institutions such as campuses, airports, national parks, and others.
Another field is last-mile delivery – a growing transport sector that has hitherto clashed with the goal of reducing traffic and local emissions in urban areas. To this end, HOLON is also aiming for special autonomous transport variants in the future.
To further increase the growth potential, Benteler and Holon are also examining the possibility of working with other strategic partners and investors for the new company. The first pilot applications, also outside of North America, are to be announced in the coming months and will be developed from 2023 onwards.