By Marco Petrone, Vice President Viasat Group
It’s been a long time since the topic of a digital innovation, which will lead to a deep transformation of the Automotive industry, has been discussed. What it is not clear yet, is that it is happening at high speed. Not only in International markets, but also in our country. The figures speak for themselves: it is estimated that by 2020 the penetration of connected cars could reach 100% in large countries such as Germany, the United Kingdom and France. Such a trend is growing in Italy as well: they were 7.5 million at the end of 2016 (+40% compared to 2015) and 11 million at the end of 2017, for about a quarter of the circulating car fleet. The EU has encouraged this process with the entry into force of the eCall service: since March 2018, all new approval vehicles must be equipped with safety devices to call emergency services –even automatically- in case of collision. At global level, then, the estimates of Frost & Sullivan claim that the sales of connected cars will increase exponentially from 25 million in 2017 to 70 million in 2022. It is not just about connected cars in here. There are widespread expectations about autonomous cars. Work is still in progress, despite the scepticism of final consumers about their effective future availability. Market analysts are optimistic and convinced that the potential benefits deriving from the diffusion of these vehicles (fewer accidents, traffic reduction and the greater inclusiveness of the new offer) will push the market. Frost & Sullivan estimates envisage a market of 80 billion dollars by 2030. Innovation will be the key factor for the development of the consolidated Automotive market. The availability of a growing number of technologically advanced circulating cars (connected and / or autonomous) will be the starting point for new markets. For instance, Juniper Research has estimated that sales of new services to consumers –with the help of Big Data technologies- will reach a value of 49.2 billion dollars as early as 2022. Overall, the total car market will grow to 7.800 billion dollars in 2030. The perfect environment for a group like Viasat, strategically positioned on the various declinations of services and products provided by telematic technologies: from Insuretech to Fleet Management, from Big Data to IoT, from security, safety and assistance operations 24/7 to smart cities solutions, from connected people to connected buildings. Solutions that the Group is exporting to all those countries in which our subsidiaries have been opened. The ability to design and develop products and related dedicated services, as well as to derogate them within the same group of companies, makes Viasat different from all its European competitors and makes the Company the fastest, most effective and complete LBS operator on the market today.