Vietnam tech firm FPT launches auto unit, plans $100-million investment

HANOI (Reuters) – Vietnam’s leading tech firm FPT has established an automotive technology subsidiary in Texas, it said on Thursday, with a $100-million plan to expand globally to serve clients such as Hyundai and Honda.

The unit, FPT Automotive, is backed by the software arm of Vietnam’s biggest listed tech company by market value, FPT, which offers AI, cloud and big data services to clients across the world and is also growing in chip design and education.

“We anticipate a total of $100 million investment in the next five years, at the minimum,” Pham Minh Tuan, chief executive of FPT Software told Reuters.

“The company will prioritise strategic markets, including the United States, Europe, Japan, South Korea, China, India, and Vietnam,” he added.

Separately, the FPT chairman said the firm would continue to expand globally but had no immediate plans to go public overseas to raise funds.

The automotive industry in recent years has witnessed a shift to software-defined vehicles that offer flexibility, improved safety, and enhanced user experience.

Boston Consulting Group estimated the emergence of software-defined vehicles will create over $650 billion in value for the auto industry by 2030, making up 15% to 20% of automotive value.

“The establishment in the U.S. will allow us to catch up with the latest technology advancements in software-defined vehicles and automotive in general here, while still targeting a global customer base,” Tuan said.

FPT Automotive counts leading automakers Hyundai, Honda, Volvo and Vietnam’s electric vehicle maker VinFast as clients, according to Tuan. It has eyes on becoming a billion-dollar automotive services and products provider in 2030, with development strategies including acquisitions and partnerships with leading names in the industry.

(Reporting by Phuong Nguyen; Editing by Kanupriya Kapoor)