Uber Technologies Inc., the San Francisco, California-headquartered American multinational ride-hailing start-up, had been in an early-stage talk to divest its self-driving unit Uber Advanced Technologies Group (ATG) to self-driving start-up Aurora, an associated Press report published late on Friday had revealed citing sources familiar with the subject-matter who wished to remain anonymous.
On top of that, the Associated Press report had also quoted one of the sources as saying that the talks had still been in an early stage and there was no certainty that the discussions would stem a divestiture of Uber Technologies’ autonomous driving unit, nonetheless, the source had also added that the San Francisco-based American multinational ride sharing pioneer, which had yet to report a profit, had been exploring an option to hold stakes in the new entity, had a deal been reached with Aurora.
Uber seeks to divest money-draining self-driving unit
In point of fact, latest move from Uber Technologies to shrug off its autonomous vehicle division came forth as the ride-hailing behemoth had been vying to vent out a way to reduce expenses in a bid to turn into profitability by end-2021 as promised earlier this year, while the Uber Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi had reiterated multiple times that the company, which had been seeking more outside investments in order to stay afloat amid a steep decline at its core ride-hailing businesses due to the pandemic-led restrictions, had been looking to reshape its primary interests such as ride-sharing and food delivery since the onset of the pandemic outbreak.
Although, the financial terms of the deal had yet to be disclosed, Japanese tech investment tycoon SoftBank Group Corp. alongside Toyota Motor Corp.-backed Uber’s self-driving unit had raised a lump-sum of $1 billion in a fund-raising campaign earlier last year, valuing the company at $7.25 billion.
Aurora, which had already tested its self-driving vehicles in San Francisco Bay Area and PittsBurgh, could be a strong candidate in a highly clogged autonomous driving industry that harbours a blazing presence of a raft of deep-pocket automakers and mega-cap tech conglomerates, following its takeover of Uber’s autonomous driving unit, suggested analysts.