GM autonomous unit Cruise valued at $19 bln in funding round

GM Cruise autonomous car company gets $1.15 billion investment ahead of 2019 launch

GM Cruise gets another $1.15B in funding

General Motors' Cruise Automation announced Tuesday it raised another $1.15 billion in its latest investment round, bringing the firm's valuation to around $19 billion. Japan's SoftBank Vision Fund announced a $2.25 billion investment last May; Honda said in October it would partner with GM to build a purpose-built self-driving auto and invest $2.75 billion over the next 12 years.

Developing and deploying self-driving vehicles at massive scale is the engineering challenge of our generation.

When SoftBank made its investment previous year, it bought a 20% stake in Cruise for $2.25 billion.

Cruise lost US$728 million last year, and GM expects the tab to be about US$1 billion this year, the company said in January.

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The investment is part of GM's continuing goal of developing autonomous driving cars. The potential to make money is tremendous for companies that can cut the cost of transporting humans or delivering goods.

GM wouldn't disclose how the investors could be repaid or priest's ownership arrangement. "We're not speaking to the stipulations at this moment", Wert said.

Investors in startups typically get their money back through profit sharing, when the company is spun off with a public stock offering, or when it is acquired by another company.

Ford is investing $900 million in its southeast MI footprint as part of an $11.1 billion investment in global electric vehicles. Cruise's main competition is Waymo, which past year had the best-performing autonomous vehicles in California with one disengagement every 11,017 miles, according to a report from the state's Department of Motor Vehicles. It has pledged to do that in an unspecified city sometime this year, but recently has backed away. "As soon as we're able to launch without the driver, we will", Barra told analysts. We see huge opportunity. Cruise spent about $200 million last quarter. The company previously announced plans to develop and roll out an autonomous ride-hailing service by the end of this year. Updates share price. With AP Photos.

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