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Michelin to acquire Masternaut

Michelin is to acquire European telematics specialist Masternaut for an undisclosed amount as part of its ongoing expansion into the telematics sector.

Dhruv Parekh, CEO of Masternaut

Dhruv Parekh, CEO of Masternaut

The announcement of the acquisition, which is expected to complete within 60 days and will see Masternaut continue to operate under its own brand as a fully owned subsidiary within Michelin, comes a month after Bridgestone Europe completed its own acquisition of TomTom Telematics for €910m (£781m) under plans to become a “mobility solutions leader”.

For Michelin, the acquisition of Masternaut marks its third major acquisition in the fleet telematics industry, following previous investments in Nextraq in North America and Sascar in South America, and will give the firm access to Europe’s rapidly growing telematics market – projected by industry analyst Berg Insight to grow by over 15% p.a. in the next five years.

Founded in 1996, Masternaut has 10,000 customers using its fourth-generation telematics platform. Last year, the firm restructured its operations to focus on software rather than hardware, aimed at helping businesses and Governments across Europe better harness connected car data to help transform business operations, from efficiency to safety.

Florent Menegaux, managing partner of Michelin, said: “Michelin is consolidating its expertise in telematics, enabling us to optimise customer mobility and respond to the needs of a changing market. Masternaut represents a further step in the expansion of our Services & Solutions business, especially in Europe and for light vehicle fleets.”

The acquisition will also accelerate Masternaut’s product development and its growth across Europe including new markets, drawing upon Michelin’s investment and automotive expertise. Masternaut will particularly target developments data science, in areas such as predictive maintenance and operational re-engineering.

Dhruv Parekh, CEO of Masternaut, said: “Over the last four years, I have been incredibly proud of what we have achieved. Masternaut Connect today is one of the fastest growing telematics platforms in Europe, with an industry-leading Net Promoter Score. Our investment in an enterprise-grade IoT platform has enabled us to launch new products in a scalable way. Together with the Michelin brand, we are well-positioned to expand in the connected vehicle industry across Europe. Operating within the Michelin Group accelerates our ability to achieve the vision of a connected world that is safer, cleaner and more productive.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day.