Toyota Motor Corp., Denso Corporation and the SoftBank Vision Fund (SVF) have announced they will invest $US1 billion in Uber Technologies Inc.’s Advanced Technologies Group (Uber ATG). The investment, in a newly formed ATG corporate entity, aims to accelerate the development and commercialisation of automated ridesharing services.
Under the terms, Toyota and Denso will together invest $US667 million and SVF will invest $US333 million, valuing the new Uber ATG entity at $US7.25 billion on a post-money basis.
Toyota invested $US500 million in Uber in August 2018, when the two companies announced their intention to bring pilot-scale deployments of automated Toyota Sienna-based ridesharing vehicles to the Uber ridesharing network in 2021, leveraging the strengths of Uber ATG’s self-driving technology alongside the Toyota Guardian advanced safety support system.
The companies says that the further investment and expanded partnership builds upon the progress made to date, deepening the companies’ collaboration in designing and developing next-generation autonomous vehicle hardware. It will also prepare the companies and industry for mass production and commercialisation of automated ridesharing vehicles and services. Toyota will also contribute up to an additional $US300 million over the next three years to help cover the costs related to these activities.
“This investment and our strong partnership with the Toyota Group are a testament to the incredible work of our ATG team to date, and the exciting future ahead for this important project, alongside great partners,” said Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO of Uber. “The development of automated driving technology will transform transportation as we know it, making our streets safer and our cities more liveable. Today’s announcement, along with our ongoing OEM and supplier relationships, will help maintain Uber’s position at the forefront of that transformation.”
The transaction is expected to close in Q3 of calendar year 2019.