Publicado: Mar, Febrero 12, 2019
Financiera | Por Marilu Caballero

Amazon eases into self-driving tech, joining Aurora funding surge

Amazon eases into self-driving tech, joining Aurora funding surge

Aurora is led by Chris Urmson, former head of the Google self-driving auto initiative.

SAN FRANCISCO: A self-driving auto technology startup founded by former Google, Tesla and Uber executives said Thursday it secured $530 million in new funding that included a "significant" investment from Amazon. Bagnell was a founder member of Carnegie Mellon's Robotics Centre and Uber's Advanced Technology Centre. Aurora's platform Having no interest in building or operating fleets of self-driving vehicles, Aurora is partnering with automakers like Volkswagen, Hyundai Motor and Chinese-backed electric vehicle startup Byton to help develop their self-driving vehicles.

Aurora was founded by CEO Chris Urmson, the former CTO of self-driving cars at Google parent company Alphabet. Aurora's leadership has a lot of experience in the automotive industry, too. The latter is seen not only as a linchpin when it comes to safety, but also to the monetization potential of future self-driving vehicles, be they conventional passenger cars, commercial vehicles or last-mile delivery robots. Aurora raised $90 million in a funding round past year. The new company does have some competition, including Waymo and self-driving companies that were acquired by Ford (Argo AI) and GM (Cruise).

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"Autonomous technology has the potential to help make the jobs of our employees and partners safer and more productive", an Amazon spokesperson said to Bloomberg, "whether it's in a fulfillment center or on the road, and we're excited about the possibilities". The company is a leader in supply-chain automation and is vocal about pushing the envelope with new technology, such as drones, to carry out transportation and deliveries.

Self-driving cars are not just for people- the technology can also move goods.

"With this newest investment, we will accelerate the development of the Aurora Driver and strengthen our team and ecosystem", stated an Aurora blog post.

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