Uber has sold its self-driving unit, Advanced Technologies Group (ATG) to Aurora, in a move to focus on profitability. Uber denies it’s abandoning the self-driving dream altogether.
“Few technologies hold as much promise to improve people’s lives with safe, accessible, and environmentally friendly transportation as self-driving vehicles. For the last five years, our phenomenal team at ATG has been at the forefront of this effort—and in joining forces with Aurora, they are now in pole position to deliver on that promise even faster,” said Dara Khosrowshahi, Uber CEO. “I’m looking forward to working with Chris, and to bringing the Aurora Driver to the Uber network in the years ahead.”
ATG, like Aurora, has been heads down, focused on building software, hardware, product design, and has made tremendous headway on many fronts. ATG will strengthen and accelerate the first Aurora Driver applications for heavy-duty trucks while allowing us to continue and accelerate our work on light-vehicle products.
Aurora is not just acquiring ATG, it is also announcing a strategic partnership with Uber to connect its technology to the world’s leading ride-hailing platform with its Aurora Driver technology for autonomous passenger mobility and trucking. Aurora will deliver its product first to Uber.
“By adding the people and technology of Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group to the incredible group we’ve already assembled at Aurora, we’re shifting the landscape of the automated vehicle space,” said Chris Urmson, co-founder and CEO of Aurora. “With the addition of ATG, Aurora will have an incredibly strong team and technology, a clear path to several markets, and the resources to deliver. Simply put, Aurora will be the company best positioned to deliver the self-driving products necessary to make transportation and logistics safer, more accessible, and less expensive.”
Uber is investing $400 million for a 26 percent stake in Aurora and Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi is joining Aurora’s Board.
Founded in 2017 by the leading experts in self-driving, Aurora is building the Aurora Driver, a platform that brings together software, hardware and data services to operate passenger vehicles, light commercial vehicles, and heavy-duty trucks across a range of applications.