Category Archives: Automotive

Quadric.io raises $15M to build a plug-and-play supercomputer for autonomous systems

Quadric.io, a startup founded by some of the folks behind the once-secretive bitcoin mining operation “21E6,” has raised $15 million in a Series A round that will fund the development of a supercomputer designed for autonomous systems.   The round was led by automotive Tier 1 supplier DENSO and its semiconductor products arm NSITEXE, which will also be one of Quadric.io’s customers for future electronic systems in all levels of autonomous driving solutions. Leawood VC also participated in the Series A round. The company says it will use the […]

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In-car commerce startup Cargo extends Uber partnership to Brazil

Cargo, the startup that brings the convenience store into ride-hailing vehicles, is making its first international expansion through an exclusive partnership with Uber in Brazil. Uber drivers in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro will now be able to sign up for Cargo and potentially earn additional income by selling products to passengers during their ride. Cargo, which launched in 2017, provides qualified ridesharing drivers with free boxes filled with the kinds of goods you might find in a convenience store, including snacks and phone chargers. Riders […]

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Uber’s trading debut: who was (and wasn’t) at the opening bell

Uber finally made its debut Friday on the New York Stock Exchange, ending its decade-long journey from startup to publicly traded company. So far, it’s been a ho-hum beginning, with shares opening at $42, down from the IPO price. The share price is hovering just under $44. Thirteen people, including executives, early employees, drivers and customers, were on the balcony for the historic bell ringing that opened the markets Friday. Noticeable absentees were co-founder Garrett Camp and former CEO and co-founder Travis Kalanick, who was ousted from […]

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Ford invests $500M in Rivian and intends to build a vehicle on Rivian’s EV platform

Rivian today announced a major investment from Ford. The 115-year-old automaker is investing $500 million into the Michigan-based EV startup. Along with the cash, Ford announced plans to build a vehicle on Rivian’s electric vehicle platform. “This strategic partnership marks another key milestone in our drive to accelerate the transition to sustainable mobility,” RJ Scaringe, Rivian founder and CEO, said in a released statement. “Ford has a long-standing commitment to sustainability, with Bill Ford being one of the industry’s earliest advocates, and we are excited to use […]

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Digging into key takeaways from our 2019 Robotics+AI Sessions Event

Extra Crunch offers members the opportunity to tune into conference calls led and moderated by the TechCrunch writers you read every day. This week, TechCrunch’s Brian Heater and Lucas Matney shared their key takeaways from our Robotics+AI Sessions event at UC Berkeley last week. The event was filled with panels, demos and intimate discussions with key robotics and deep learning founders, executives and technologists. Brian and Lucas discuss which companies excited them most, as well as which verticals have the most exciting growth prospects in the robotics […]

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Smartcar accuses $50M-funded rival Otonomo of API plagiarism

Ruthless copying is common in tech. Just ask Snapchat. However, it’s typically more conceptual than literal. But car API startup Smartcar claims that its competitor Otonomo copy-and-pasted Smartcar’s API documentation, allegedly plagiarizing it extensively to the point of including the original’s typos and randomly generated strings of code. It’s published a series of side-by-side screenshots detailing the supposed theft of its intellectual property. Smartcar CEO Sahas Katta says “We do have evidence of several of their employees systemically using our product with behavior indicating they wanted to […]

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Uber’s self-driving car unit raises $1B from Toyota, Denso and Vision Fund ahead of spin-out

Uber has confirmed it will spin out its self-driving car business after the unit closed $1 billion in funding from Toyota, auto-parts maker Denso and SoftBank’s Vision Fund. The development has been speculated for some time — as far back as October — and it serves to both remove a deeply unprofitable unit from the main Uber business, helping Uber scale back some of its losses, while giving Uber’s Advanced Technologies Group (known as Uber ATG) more freedom to focus on the tough challenge of bringing autonomous […]

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Backer of Musical.ly, Grindr and Opera to invest $50M in self-driving startup Pony.ai

A games publisher in China is following the path of its larger peer Tencent to back a wide spectrum of startups for financial gains. Beijing Kunlun Wanwei, or Kunlun, announced in a filing this week that it plans to inject $50 million into autonomous driving startup Pony.ai in exchange for a 3 percent stake. Pony.ai confirmed the investment with TechCrunch in an email response, adding that the money contributes to its pre-B round of financing. The startup last pocketed $102 million, which valued it at nearly $1 […]

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Online used car startup Shift adds another $40M, snags COO in road to IPO

Online used car startup Shift Technologies has tacked on another $40 million in equity funding, hired a new COO with Amazon and Enjoy roots and scaled up its engineering staff — all in the past several months — as the company aims to double its revenue this year. The recent activity, along with what executives have told TechCrunch is a diligent focus on unit economics, is all directed toward a larger objective to take the company public sometime in 2021. Shift, which is based in San Francisco, […]

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Dissecting what Lyft’s IPO means for Uber and the future of mobility

Extra Crunch offers members the opportunity to tune into conference calls led and moderated by the TechCrunch writers you read every day. This week, TechCrunch’s Kirsten Korosec and Kate Clark led a deep-dive discussion into Lyft’s IPO and the outlook for the business going forward. After skyrocketing nearly 10% on its first day hitting the public markets, Lyft stock has faded back down towards its IPO price as some investors grow more concerned over the company’s path to profitability (or lack thereof) and the long-term fundamentals of […]

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