Sources: Uber to Spin Off AV Unit

Sources say Uber is considering spinning off its AV unit, the Advanced Technologies Group (ATG), into a separate company.

The Financial Times has cited two sources as saying the company is mulling the option of using “minority stake investments” as a way of financing the ATG as a semi-independent entity. Uber is said to be under pressure from its financiers over its hopes to go public next year. The paper cited the sources as saying some investors are “interested” in funding the ATG, which would have its own “valuation and equity” if it were spun off.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the company did not wish to comment on rumors of a spin-off. Instead, a spokesperson claimed shared AVs would “make transportation safer, more efficient and more affordable for riders on the Uber network. Our team at the ATG is wholly focused on building the safest self-driving technology out there, and we remain committed to supporting their efforts”.

The Financial Times says a semi-independent ATG would still have Uber as its “operational control[ler]” and “majority owner”, but any R&D and launch costs could be split among other investors. According to the paper, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has dismissed the idea of selling off the unit outright. Spun off or not, if Elon Musk’s recent tweets are to be believed, the ATG may face increased competition from an allegedly new and improved version of Tesla’s Autopilot featuring the Hardware 3 chipset.

 


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