Michigan and California aren't the only two states capitalizing on automakers' expansion into the tech sector. Even the hipster haven of Portland, Oregon is getting in on the action, thanks to Jaguar Land Rover, and its base of operations is about to entrench itself even further.
The company is expanding its footprint in Portlandia, starting with an all-new vehicle center. This 20,000-square-foot facility will focus on research and development of new technologies. It should open later this year, and the company will create 30 new positions for developers and engineers.
JLR is also expanding its tech incubator, where startups work alongside the automaker to help develop new infotainment tech. The three companies currently in the incubator are Workfrom, SICdrone and Carfit, and it's adding three more -- AVE, Validated and Lyfeboat. AVE focuses on in-vehicle entertainment, Lyfeboat creates online booking software for service centers and Validated is an app that lets businesses buy its customers rides or parking spots.
To manage this menagerie of minds, JLR's tapped Rupert Poole to run the whole shebang. He's packing 20 years of auto experience, nearly three-quarters of which were spent with JLR. He used to helm their next-gen infotainment division in the UK. Hopefully he knows to watch out for the bicyclists.