Furuno Acquires eRide, Makes it GPS Nav and Timing Center

Furuno Electric Co., Ltd. (Nishinomiya, Japan) has acquired eRide, the San Francisco-based maker of assisted GPS chips and software. As a subsidiary of Furuno, eRide will become Furuno’s central location for GPS navigation and timing chipset development.
Previously Furuno’s commitment included licensing the eRide technology and also providing capital investment funding. Furuno has now acquired more than 90 percent shareholding of eRide. With the acquisition, eRide sales and procurement functions will be taken over by Furuno, while the eRide division will continue to be dedicated to research and development.

"The market demand for ultra-reliable, high-quality GPS receivers has increased exponentially over the years and GPS applications have spread into many different areas," a Furuno statement said. With eRide as the GPS navigation and timing center, Furuno will be able to continue providing its customers with advanced, dependable market-specific GPS products, the statement said.

eRide, a fabless venture company, was established in 1999 by a group of GPS engineers and professionals engaging in the development, design, and sales of high-sensitivity GPS chipsets. In 2005, Furuno entered into a licensing agreement with eRide. The following year Furuno further strengthened the relationship with eRide by underwriting preferred shares of eRide stock. Furuno’s acquisition of eRide’s high-sensitivity GPS technology, LSI design technology, and other intellectual properties will merge with Furuno’s existing GPS core technology .

Furuno is a maker of GPS modules and chipsets for Japan’s automobile industry, especially for in-car navigation systems. Furuno also supplies GPS navigation and timing receivers worldwide for a wide range of applications. Starting out as a marine navigation company, Furuno developed a fish finder in 1948, then became established as a manufacturer in a wide range of marine electronics manufacturing. Over the years, Furuno created the System Products Division which includes the GPS/timing and medical divisions.


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