Waymo, Google’s sibling company has announced a $2.5 billion dollar funding round geared towards improving its independent driving technology and its associated team. This was announced earlier today by the car company.
The funding round was announced not too long after the exit of the company’s John Krafcik – the company’s former CEO in April of this year. After his departure, the company faced huge backlashes. The company was said to be moving slower than what was anticipated towards the commercialization of its self-driving technology. The thing is, Waymo as well as other companies in the line of self-driving technology have found adoption of the technology quite challenging and more difficult than expected. Waymo, for instance, still had to depend greatly on human safety drivers during the last summer.
Unlike other Alphabet subsidiaries, Waymo is one of those that have continued to lose money. The recent funding round is evidence that the company largely depends on investors to thrive and for support.
Waymo was founded in 2009 and was called the Google Self-Driving Car Project initially before it was changed in December of 2016 to Waymo. The company is headquartered in Mountain View, California.
Waymo develops driving technologies to be used in other vehicles including vehicles like Class 8 tractor-trailers and delivery vans and operates a commercial self-driving taxi service called Waymo One in Phoenix, Arizona.
Alphabet provided full support for Waymo, as it does with its other subsidiaries, until last year after the company needed more capital. Waymo raised the sum of $2.25 billion in its first external funding round last year.
Waymo has driven millions of miles on public roads across 25 states in the U.S. and says that it dreams of individuals being able to own and operate vehicles with self-driving technology in the future.
The following are some of the companies that invested in the latest funding round – Waymo’s parent company Alphabet; Tiger Global, Temasek; Silver Lake, funds and accounts advised y T.Rowe Price Associates; AutoNation, Andreessen Horowitz, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Magna International, Fidelity Management & Research Company, etc.