Aurora Innovation: Amazon invests in self-driving car startup Aurora

Aurora Innovation: Amazon invests in self-driving car startup Aurora

Self-driving auto startup Aurora has raised more than $530 million in fresh funding, bucking recent skepticism by investors and industry players that autonomous vehicle technology has been overhyped. According to a new company blog post on Medium, Shell Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners and Geodesic are among the other parties aboard this fundraising round.

The Series B financing raises Aurora's valuation to almost $2.5 billion according to TechCrunch. It was founded in 2016 by Chris Urmson, who led Google's self-driving vehicle project before it became Waymo.

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. Eschenbach will take a seat on the startup's board. "Over the last couple of years, we've met with more than 15 of the top autonomous vehicle companies from around the world", said Sequoia's Carl Eschenbach in an interview.

Early previous year, it announced its first strategic partnership with Volkswagen Group to bring self-driving cars to market.

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"This is really about accelerating and delivering on our mission, which is to deliver self-driving technology safely, quickly and broadly", Urmson said in an interview.

Aurora was founded by CEO Chris Urmson, the former CTO of self-driving cars at Google parent company Alphabet. It competes with companies like Alphabet's Waymo and Argo AI (Ford) and Cruise (GM). The company aims to accelerate the development of autonomous technology with the capital raised.

"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". Amazon invests in self-driving technology Amazon is very interested in self-driving technology.

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