Israeli lidar maker Innoviz (NASDAQ:INVZ) announced on Tuesday that it has been awarded a contract to supply lidar units and associated software for autonomous driving to a Volkswagen unit, in a deal worth $4. billion dollars in sales over eight years.
As part of the agreement, Volkswagen will integrate Innoviz’s latest automotive lidar unit and its proprietary perception software into vehicles in its portfolio.
The agreement will run for eight years from “mid-decade”, when the first Volkswagen Group vehicles equipped with Innoviz are expected to ship. Innoviz expects to provide lidar units for between five and eight million Volkswagen Group vehicles over this eight-year period.
Lidar – aka light detection and ranging – uses an invisible laser beam to scan the environment and build a detailed three-dimensional image.
The sensors are considered essential components of most autonomous driving systems, which compare the images generated by the lidar with a detailed three-dimensional map to double-check the precise location of the vehicle.
As development and production costs have plummeted, sensors have been more widely adopted in vehicles and driver assistance systems, leading to fierce competition among a slew of lidar startups for automakers.
Innoviz, which went public via a merger with a special purpose acquisition company in late 2020, previously announced the deal but did not disclose its client.
The lidar maker said in May that it had won a deal with “one of the largest automakers in the world” to “become its direct supplier of lidar across multiple brands.”
INVZ shares rose 53 cents, or 13.3%, to $4.53.