Volkswagen on Friday announced a $2.6 billion total investment in ArgoAI, a self-driving-vehicle startup that spun out of Carnegie Mellon University in 2016 and that had earlier attracted $1 billion in funding from Ford.
VW’s investment is $1 billion in cash, with the additional contribution of its $1.6-billion, Munich-based Autonomous Intelligent Driving division.
ArgoAI would remain an independent company post-deal, which would allow it to seek additional investment from other partners.
Also on Friday, VW and Ford revealed additional details of their ongoing alliance, which commenced earlier this year. Ford will use a VW electric-vehicle platform to launch a new European EV by 2023.
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The race to fund promising self-driving-car startups is intensifying.
On Friday, Volkswagen announced that it would invest $2.6 billion in the autonomous-driving tech startup ArgoAI. The stake consists of $1 billion in cash plus the contribution of the VW Group’s $1.6-billion Autonomous Intelligent Driving (AID) division, headquartered in Munich, Germany.
The deal would value ArgoAI at more than $7 billion and transform AID into the startup’s European headquarters.
“Our agreement with Volkswagen positions us as a technology platform company, expands the potential geography for deployment and will further fuel our product development,” ArgoAI Bryan Salesky said in a blog post published Friday. “In fact, we’re the first self-driving company with definitive deployment plans in both the United States and Europe.”
He added: “We are excited to welcome the AID employees to Argo AI….With this move, our company will expand by 200 employees to reach a total of over 700.”
Read more: The CEO of Argo AI, a self-driving startup backed by Ford, reveals the one thing that is absolutely necessary for an autonomous-driving company to survive
ArgoAI formed in 2016 and, according to Salesky, planned to join with a major automaker from the …read more
Source:: Business Insider