Cruise LLC., the GM- and Honda-backed self-driving start-up based on San Francisco, California, alongside its majority stakeholder General Motors Co. said in a joint statement on Tuesday that the companies would partner up with Microsoft Corp in a bid to commercialize driverless vehicles.
In point of fact, latest move from GM and Cruise came forth roughly a month after GM Chief Executive Mary Barra had been quoted saying in a statement that the United States’ No. 2 passenger carmaker which had lost its automotive industry crown to Tesla Inc following a meteoric uprising of the e-vehicle manufacturer in 2020, would call all of its arms into action to solidify its stance in electric and autonomous vehicles market, a move what analysts said was largely aimed at taking on Tesla Inc.
Aside from that, GM said later last year that it would roll out as many as 25 new e-vehicle models by 2025, while last week the Detroit carmaker had laid out plans for its expansion into e-vehicle delivery business, a lucrative self-driving business sector that Elon Musk’s Tesla had yet to tap into.
Microsoft to join forces with Cruise, GM
In tandem, according to the statement released earlier in the day, the Silicon Valley’s scintillating tech conglomerate with an utter dominance in cloud computing, Microsoft Corp, would join General Motors, Honda Motor Co alongside other institutional investors in a new equity investment of over $2 billion in to Cruise, valuing the self-driving start-up over $30 billion, while Cruise would be capitalizing on Microsoft’s cloud computing platform Azure for its autonomous driving vehicles.
On top of that, under the terms of the deal, GM’s tie-up with Microsoft would witness an acceleration in Detroit carmaker’s digitalization moves such as faster mobility services alongside a streamlining of GM’s digital supply chains and artificial intelligence.
Meanwhile, expressing a through and through optimism over the latest tie-up, Microsoft Chief Satya Nadella who had masterminded the tech conglomerate’s transformation into a dominant force in cloud computing from a low-growth, low profit-margin software industry, said in a statement, “As Cruise and GM’s preferred cloud, we will apply the power of Azure to help them scale and make autonomous transportation mainstream. ”