Tesla watchers eye Mobileye's $500 million IPO

Mobileye, an Israeli company that’s at the forefront of developing active safety features for vehicles, is scheduled to IPO on the New York Stock Exchange this week. The company makes software and cameras that help cars avoid accidents, and you can watch the roadshow here. The company expects to price shares at $17 to $19 a share and raise roughly $500 million.

Tesla watchers, including Model S owners, are paying close attention to Mobileye on discussion forums and investor threads. The company’s prospectus lists Audi, BMW, GM, Mitsubishi, Tesla, Volvo and several other automakers as partners, and the Israeli press has reported that Mobileye and Tesla have teamed up on driverless cars.

“We can simply confirm that we have a business relationship with them,” said Simon Sproule, Tesla’s VP of Communications, in response to an email asking how to best characterize the relationship. “Nothing further to add.” (Thanks Simon!)

The company, which was founded in 1999, describes itself as a leading designer of software and related technologies for camera based “Advanced Driver Assistance Systems,” or ADAS, and estimates that its technology will be available in 160 car models from 18 OEMs worldwide by the end of 2014. Its camera-based ADAS technology includes lane departure warnings, collision warnings, pedestrian detection functions, and the first wave of autonomous driving technologies, including detection of curbs, construction zone obstructions, potholes and debris.

Tesla reports its 2Q earnings Thursday. While much of the investor focus will be on sales to China and updates on the planned Gigafactory,some analysts are curious to hear more about Mobileye, particularly with regards to the upcoming Model X and the Model 3. Are the next vehicles going to ship with Mobileye included?

“We also think it is probable that Tesla is working with Mobileye on driverless automation in its vehicles,” said Andrea James of Dougherty & Co. in a recent note.

Dana Hull Dana Hull (252 Posts)

Dana Hull covers clean technology and energy policy for the San Jose Mercury News. She often writes about electric vehicles, the smart grid, the solar industry and California energy policy, from RPS goals to Gov. Jerry Brown's big dreams for distributed generation.