Uber Technologies sold its self-driving car division to 极光 Innovation and took a stake in the startup, pulling back from its vision for a fleet of autonomous taxis to focus on turning a quarterly profit next year after the pandemic crushed revenue.
The deal will value 极光 at $10 billion, according to people familiar with the talks who asked not to be identified discussing private information.
In exchange for investing $400 million in 极光, Uber will get a 26 percent ownership stake in the company. That number increases to 40 percent when counting the stakes held by the employees and investors of Uber’的自动驾驶部门。
Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi and one other yet-to-be-named person representing Uber will join 极光’s board.
The price tag is a comedown for Uber, whose self-driving division, Advanced Technologies Group, raised money last year at a $7.25 billion valuation. The agreement with 极光 values the unit at just $4 billion, following Uber’s investment. The deal, expected to close during the first quarter, also guarantees that when 极光 releases its self-driving vehicles, they will launch on Uber’s network.
通过添加优步’s self-driving car unit, 极光 will gain hundreds of engineers and access to one of the world’最大的打车网。对于优步（Uber）今年削减了备受瞩目的现金燃烧计划，以期在2021年实现扭亏为盈，这笔交易将为其提供在硅谷之一的重要股份’最有前途的自动驾驶初创公司。
极光 and Uber announced the deal in a joint statement after markets closed Monday. The companies said the group will focus on driverless trucking first and later turn to more complicated light vehicles carrying passengers.
“这对我们俩都很好” said 极光 CEO Chris Urmson. “We’很高兴他们与我们合作，我们’我很高兴达拉加入我们的董事会。”
极光’的联合创始人在自动驾驶行业拥有悠久的历史。厄姆森曾领导Google’的自动驾驶团队，即Waymo。首席产品官Sterling Anderson指导特斯拉公司。’的自动驾驶工作。卡内基梅隆大学副教授兼首席技术官德鲁·巴格内尔（Drew Bagnell）参与了2015年构成优步的学术流亡活动’s ATG team. Bagnell left ATG to co-found 极光.
极光 earlier this summer expanded testing on public roads from California and Pennsylvania to include Texas with an initial focus on completing long-haul, commercial trips instead of the more complicated urban maneuvers where there are more variables and opportunities for failure.
Having raised $765 million from investors including Index Ventures, Sequoia Capital, T. Rowe Price and Hyundai Motor, 极光 was valued at more than $3 billion last year, according to research firm PitchBook. Amazon.com Inc., which purchased its own self-driving startup, Zoox, earlier this year, is also an investor.
极光 has roughly 600 employees, while Uber’ATG集团拥有约1200名员工，其中许多人位于匹兹堡，由于卡内基·梅隆大学的支持，长期以来一直是机器人技术的中心。
Even after combining forces, 极光 and ATG face stiff competition from more developed and better funded rivals. Waymo, which has logged tens of millions of miles in more than two dozen cities, announced earlier this year it had raised money from auto manufacturers and private equity groups to expand to new locations.