Microsoft will join General Motors, Honda and others to make a $2 Billion equity Investment in Cruise, an Autonomous Vehicle Company
There's been a lot of buzz in the industry about Apple seeking partners for their autonomous vehicle venture code named Project Titan. Interesting developments have come to life in just the last week with Foxconn and Zhejang creating a joint venture to revolutionize that automotive industry, followed by today's revelation regarding Hon Hai's MIH Electric Vehicle Platform.
Apple has a way of shocking the market with new developments like the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch and the M1 processor and so self-driving car maker Cruise and majority shareholder General Motors Co said on Tuesday they would partner with Microsoft Corp to commercialize driverless autonomous vehicles to get their vehicle to market well ahead of any potential vehicle from Apple.
Officially, Cruise and General Motors announced today that they have entered a long-term strategic relationship with Microsoft to accelerate the commercialization of self-driving vehicles. The companies will bring together their software and hardware engineering excellence, cloud computing capabilities, manufacturing know-how and partner ecosystem to transform transportation to create a safer, cleaner, and more accessible world for everyone.
Statement by Cruise CEO Dan Ammann: "Our mission to bring safer, better, and more affordable transportation to everyone isn’t just a tech race - it’s also a trust race. Microsoft, as the gold standard in the trustworthy democratization of technology, will be a force multiplier for us as we commercialize our fleet of self-driving, all-electric, shared vehicles."
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To unlock the potential of cloud computing for self-driving vehicles, Cruise will leverage Azure, Microsoft’s cloud and edge computing platform, to commercialize its unique autonomous vehicle solutions at scale. Microsoft, as Cruise’s preferred cloud provider, will also tap into Cruise’s deep industry expertise to enhance its customer-driven product innovation and serve transportation companies across the globe through continued investment in Azure.
Microsoft will join General Motors, Honda and institutional investors in a combined new equity investment of more than $2 billion in Cruise, bringing the post-money valuation of Cruise to $30 billion.
Statement by Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft: "Advances in digital technology are redefining every aspect of our work and life, including how we move people and goods. As Cruise and GM's preferred cloud, we will apply the power of Azure to help them scale and make autonomous transportation mainstream."
Statement by GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra: "Microsoft is a great addition to the team as we drive toward a future world of zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion. Microsoft will help us accelerate the commercialization of Cruise’s all-electric, self-driving vehicles and help GM realize even more benefits from cloud computing as we launch 30 new electric vehicles globally by 2025 and create new businesses and services to drive growth."
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In addition, GM will work with Microsoft as its preferred public cloud provider to accelerate its digitization initiatives, including collaboration, storage, artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities.
GM will explore further opportunities with Microsoft to streamline operations across digital supply chains, foster productivity and bring new mobility services to customers faster.