GM Canada is one of the latest companies to join the Communitech hub with the opening of its own innovation hub within the Kitchener-based accelerator.
The space, officially called 2908 at Communitech, will have GM Canada’s team focusing on exploring and experimenting with mobile apps, new ride-sharing services and approaches, and partnership opportunities to incubate ideas for urban, multi-modal transportation systems that combine public transit and ride-sharing. The GM team is already looking at ways to integrate e-bikes into public transportation at its Canadian Engineering Centre in Oshawa.
The name ‘2908 at Communitech’ comes from what would be GM’s 1000th year in business.
“One of GM’s top priorities is to disrupt traditional automotive business models, including our own, in order to anticipate our customers’ needs, today and long into the future,” said GM Canada president and managing director Steve Carlisle. “With changing technology, we see tremendous opportunities for GM, Ontario and Canada in an automotive future that is increasingly electric, connected, shared, and autonomous. With 2908 at Communitech, we will knock down old approaches, find new partners and boldly go where future mobility is headed.”
The move into Communitech is not GM’s first attempt at integrating innovation into its business growth strategy; GM recently announced its $500 million investment in Lyft and its plan to develop autonomous ride-sharing vehicles programs together.
“We are very excited to have a global automotive leader like GM selecting Communitech as a partner to help navigate and accelerate the rapid disruptive change sweeping through this industry,” said Iain Klugman, CEO and president of Communitech. “Automotive is the next big area for rapid growth in the ‘internet of things’ and we look forward to helping GM build strong partnerships and new approaches to urban mobility.”