Group CEO Diess in Israel: political talks and meetings with innovative start-ups

Jun 26, 2018

  • Meeting with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
  • Talks about mobility services, start-ups and autonomous driving
  • Visit to Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial as part of Volkswagen’s culture of remembrance

One of his first foreign trips in his new capacity as Chief Executive Officer of Volkswagen AG took Dr. Herbert Diess to Israel. In addition to meeting with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Diess visited the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial. This was followed by talks with representatives from Israel’s start-up scene and discussions with the CEOs of Gett and Mobileye on innovative mobility services and autonomous driving.

Dr. Herbert Diess visited Israel in his new capacity as Chief Executive Officer of Volkswagen AG. “I particularly wanted to come to Israel at the beginning of my tenure, not least because of our company’s own past”, Herbert Diess said when he met with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at his official residence in Jerusalem. One of the topics discussed was the possibility of cooperating on innovative mobility services.

The meeting took place after a visit by Diess to the Yad Vashem Memorial, where he signed the guest book: “We have a responsibility to keep the memory of the Holocaust alive, to remember the victims and to make sure this kind of catastrophe never happens again”, Diess said.

During his visit to Israel Diess also found out more about the country’s technology and start-up scene. With over 1,000 start-ups, Tel Aviv is one of the world’s largest and most agile innovation centers. The company recently opened the Volkswagen Group “Konnect” Campus in Tel Aviv in order to make better use of this potential. “Konnect” enables start-ups and local partners to engage in a direct exchange with the Volkswagen Group and its brands. Furthermore, “Konnect” allows Volkswagen to observe developments in connectivity, autonomous driving, smart navigation, cyber security, e-mobility and even big data at close quarters.

As far as innovative mobility services are concerned, Volkswagen already holds a 20 percent stake in a partnership with the Israeli ride hailing company Gett. Diess discussed the development of future robotaxis with Gett CEO Dave Waiser during his visit. He also met with CEO and CTO Prof.  Amnon Shashua from Mobileye in Tel Aviv to discuss and test drive self-driving cars. Here, too, the innovative strength and capabilities of Israel’s technology scene, which offers interesting stimuli for Volkswagen, were apparent.



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