The auto-tech transformation continued in 2018 with key industry players focused on M&A and organic growth in the areas of shared mobility and autonomous, connected, and electric vehicles.

Much of the deal activity over the course of the past year centered around parts, components, and new technologies, with OEMs and major suppliers pursuing strategic collaborations and alliances – including with traditional competitors – and private equity investors showing increased interest in the sector.

Our Automotive and Mobility sector group hosted hot topic workshops alongside industry conferences, including The Autonomy & Urban Mobility Summit in France, and Auto-Gipfel in Germany. We executed our Silicon Valley Mobility Tour targeting technology new entrants and hosted a Mexico at the Crossroads event in Mexico City during the U.S.-Mexico trade negotiations where we discussed the impact of legislative policy on the industry and its supply chain.

We also launched an autonomous and connected vehicles podcast series and published the 2018 edition of Getting the Deal Through – Automotive to reflect current industry developments.


We advised Daimler on the creation of a joint venture with BMW to form Europe’s leading innovative mobility services business.

The 50-50 joint venture will unify certain of the companies’ services regarding car sharing, ride-hailing, parking, charging, and multimodality. The two groups will partner together in these five areas, to help shape a unique, sustainable ecosystem for future urban mobility.

Our global M&A team was led by lawyers in our Munich and Dusseldorf offices, supported by our antitrust, commercial, employment, IP, real estate, regulatory, and tax practices.


We advised Dana Incorporated, a world leader in highly-engineered solutions for powered vehicles, on its acquisition of 100%
of SME Group.

The addition of SME's low-voltage AC induction and synchronous reluctance motors, inverters, and controls, which largely support off-highway applications, rounds out Dana's robust electrified solutions offerings in China, Germany, Canada, and Italy.

Our Italian M&A team led this transaction with support from lawyers in our offices across China and Germany.


We advised FlixBus on the international roll-out of its services into other markets, including the acquisitions of numerous ticket platforms and bus companies across Europe, its expansion into the railroad business, and its entry into the U.S. market.

Through these transactions, FlixBus seeks to bring a sustainable low-cost travel experience to an increasingly widespread network.

The teams were led by M&A lawyers from our Munich, Frankfurt, Milan, Warsaw, Paris, London, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles offices, with support from our antitrust, employment, IP, regulatory, and tax practices.


We advised Ford Motor Company on its US$250m acquisition of Autonomic, Inc., a technology company that specializes in scale, architecture, and leverage for transportation solutions.

Ford’s acquisition of Autonomic will accelerate its mission to establish the Transportation Mobility Cloud platform and support its plans  to scale up other key mobility initiatives, including the drive toward full connectivity, and non-emergency medical transportation.

An M&A team from our Silicon Valley office led this transaction, supported by lawyers from our Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles offices.

Read next: Consumer M&A