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Magna commits investment of $5M in AI research institute

Investment supports Magna's AI strategy in manufacturing and autonomous driving


Magna aims to play a key role in bolstering Canada’s artificial intelligence (AI) expertise and leadership position by investing in the next generation of AI research and experts. The firm has committed to invest $5 million into the Vector Institute, a new independent AI research facility in downtown Toronto.

Vector will be dedicated to cutting-edge exploration of AI, specializing in the transformative fields of deep learning and machine learning.  The research aims at attracting, developing and retaining some of the best and brightest in the area of AI.

“The automotive world is changing rapidly, reacting and innovating in response to massive technological advances,” says Don Walker, CEO of Magna International.  “Canada is a leader in the potential game-changers of machine learning and AI, and we want to be at the forefront of its advancements in the automotive sector.”

Magna’s AI strategy revolves around  manufacturing and autonomous driving

Magna’s AI strategy revolves around two key areas:  manufacturing and autonomous driving.  From a manufacturing standpoint, leveraging AI can provide human operators enhanced information for decision making and it can automate quality, sorting and material handling to help reduce production costs.  AI-enhanced predictive maintenance systems can also enable effective error-free maintenance of equipment which ensures higher machine up-time.  As future mobility continues to evolve, AI will play a major role in dynamic decision-making in autonomous driving.  Object detection and classification combined with scene segmentation, including traffic volume, speeds and road conditions (weather, light and visibility), will be key attributes to self-driving capabilities.

Magna is proud to be doing its part by investing in the future of Canadian technology.  In addition to the company’s investment in Vector, Magna recently announced its support for NextAI – a program that came out of an innovation offsite with roughly 35 CEOs, entrepreneurs and technology experts to help keep home-grown talent in Canada and attract leading thinkers to the country.

“Magna has built a legacy on manufacturing and innovation which started in Canada. This year marks the company’s 60th anniversary and we are not slowing down.  We continue to invest in our people, operations and technologies, all of which we expect will bring continued success for another 60 years and more,” said Walker.