Ford acquires software company Journey Holding

Ford has agreed to acquire Journey Holding Corporation, a company that has developed vehicle tracking software and app-based technology designed for public transportation, as the automaker seeks to scale up its new mobility business.

Journey Holding will be housed under Ford Smart Mobility, a Ford subsidiary that invests in and builds the automaker’s transportation services. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. In a separate announcement, Ford said Tuesday it acquired Quantum Signal, a small robotics company and defense contractor known for mobile robotics and real-time simulation.

The acquisition of Journey is part of a broader vision laid out by CEO Jim Hackett more than a year ago to create an ecosystem of transportation-related services that people and cities need now and in the future. The Journey acquisition follows Ford’s purchase of Autonomic and Transloc in 2018.

Today, those services might include using an app to find a Ford-owned Spin scooter or schedule a bus or on-demand shuttle. In the future, it might include finding and hailing an autonomous vehicle.

Eventually, Journey will integrate into Transloc, a transit technology business that Ford bought in 2018. Transloc develops software that helps cities manage transit services, including on-demand shuttles.

The name of the combined organization will be announced at a later date, Ford said.

Journey Holding Corporation was founded in 2018 through the merger of two companies, Indianapolis-based DoubleMap and Salt Lake City-based Ride Systems. Journey offers software to municipalities, universities and corporations to help manage their fleets. It also has developed apps that let users schedule or track rides on shuttles, buses and other public transit.

Transloc CEO Doug Kaufman will leave the new company on August 16. Journey Holding CEO Justin Rees, who founded Ride Systems in 2007 with Kelly Rees and Ben Haynie, will lead the new company.

Together, this newly formed company of about 200 people will serve nearly 1,200 cities, universities, corporate campuses and other enterprises with software solutions for fixed-route transportation, microtransit on-demand transportation and other related areas.

“The combination of these transit technology companies will accelerate our efforts to help cities deliver more seamless, productive, and accessible transportation solutions to their citizens and visitors,” Brett Wheatley, vice president of Ford Mobility’s marketing and growth division, said in a statement. “It also will be key to connecting customers with the other mobility solutions in our portfolio, such as Spin e-scooters and our GoRide Health service.”

These services should eventually be part of the Transportation Mobility Cloud, an open cloud-based platform that Ford developed for cities to use to orchestrate and manage all the disparate transportation modes happening at any given time.