Alphabet’s ( GOOGL Quick Quote GOOGL - Free Report) self-driving unit Waymo has raised $2.5 billion in a fresh funding round, which increases its inflow of resources from external investors. The investors in the latest funding round include the likes of Andreessen Horowitz, AutoNation, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Silver Lake, Perry Creek Capital, Fidelity Management & Research Company, Magna International and Alphabet itself. Notably, the company intends to bring further advancements in its autonomous driving technology and expand its operations with the help of the newly raised funding. The recent move indicates that Waymo is continuously gaining investor optimism, which can be primarily attributed to its robust self-driving technology. Last year, the company raised $2.25 billion in funding from investors — including Silver Lake Management, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and Magna International— which marked its first funding received from outside investors. Further, the funding round got extended and the total raised amount stood at $3.2 billion. Growing Efforts of Waymo
The latest move is in sync with the growing endeavors of Waymo to bolster its presence in the autonomous driving space.
Apart from the recent funding, the company recently teamed up with Google’s Maps to ensure a seamless booking experience for Waymo’s autonomous ride-hailing service called Waymo One. Notably, customers will be able to book Waymo One directly from the Maps app. Waymo One will be added tothe ride-sharing and transit tab of the app. Further, Waymo’s partnership with Transportation Research Center—the provider of independent vehicle test facilities and proving grounds— remains noteworthy. On the back of the deal, the company intends to build an advanced testing environment for Waymo Driver in East Liberty, OH. Apart from this, it is gearing up to open its research and development facility for trucking in Menlo Park, CA. Intensifying Self-Driving War
Per a report from Research and Markets, sales of autonomous vehicles across the globe are expected to witness a CAGR of 40.3% between 2020 and 2030, and hit $58-million units by 2030.
Further, a report from Mordor Intelligence states that the worldwide driverless vehicle market is expected to seea CAGR of 18.06% between 2021 and 2026.
Given this upbeat scenario,not only Alphabet but also companies like
Amazon ( AMZN Quick Quote AMZN - Free Report) , Intel ( INTC Quick Quote INTC - Free Report) , Apple and Baidu ( BIDU Quick Quote BIDU - Free Report) are making every effort to capitalize on the growth prospects present in the autonomous driving space. Amazon’s buyout of Zoox and the launch of its first self-driving robo-taxi strengthened its position in the autonomous driving space. Then again, Apple is planning to produce self-driving car technology and introduce autonomous vehicles, which could include its breakthrough battery technology by 2024. Moreover, Intel is gaining strong on the low power consumption of Mobileye chips and the ability to create maps for self-driving systems. Further, Baidu is gaining hugely from the expansion of Apollo Go Robotaxi service, which features about 100 pick-up and drop-off stations across several residential as well as business areas. Nevertheless, Alphabet’s growing autonomous driving initiatives are likely to help it in sustaining its frontrunner position in the competition. Currently, Alphabet sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see . the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here Time to Invest in Legal Marijuana
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