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Nvidia Joins $1.05B Wayve Funding, Advances Automated Driving

Shivani Kumaresan
May 07, 2024

U.S. chipmaker Nvidia Corp. (NASDAQ:NVDA) has joined as a new investor in a $1.05 billion funding round for Wayve Technologies Ltd., a U.K. startup focused on advancing autonomous-driving technology.

The investment round, led by SoftBank Group Corp. (OTC:SFTBY) and including contributions from existing investor Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT), highlights the ongoing interest in AI and bolsters the self-driving car sector, which has faced regulatory challenges.

Wayve aims to integrate its embodied intelligence technology into vehicles of various carmakers and fleet operators rather than owning or operating the cars directly, according to a report from Bloomberg.

Embodied AI integrates advanced AI into vehicles and robots to transform how machines interact with, comprehend, and learn from human behavior in real-world environments, helping in greater usability and safety in autonomous driving systems.

CEO Alex Kendall plans to initially focus on driver-assist technology before advancing to fully autonomous vehicles, the report mentioned.

Talking about the company’s approach, Kendall emphasized Wayve’s goal of creating technology that learns driving rules independently, distinguishing it from competitors like Alphabet Inc.’s (NASDAQ:GOOGLWaymo.

Despite enthusiasm for autonomous driving, the sector has faced challenges. General Motors Co.’s (NYSE:GM) self-driving unit, Cruise, encountered setbacks, including an accident in San Francisco.

Similarly, Argo AI and Uber Technologies Inc.(NYSE:UBER) faced obstacles in their autonomous driving endeavors.

Wayve plans to utilize the raised funds to expand its team and computing capabilities. With previous investments totaling over $258 million, the startup aims to capitalize on commercial deals to achieve profitability.

According to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, the funding signifies the U.K.’s prowess in AI, which the report mentioned.

The company’s growth strategy includes the establishment of a research center in Vancouver, supplementing its existing locations in London and Mountain View, California.

Read NextMicrosoft Takes On Google And OpenAI With New AI Model: Report

Disclaimer: This content was partially produced with the help of AI tools and was reviewed and published by Benzinga editors.

Photo via Shutterstock

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