Cruise, the autonomous car firm majority-owned by General Motors, has raised another $2.75 billion in its latest funding round, bringing the company’s total valuation to over $30 billion USD.
This latest funding round was initially announced in January of this year and was originally valued at $2 billion. Wal-Mart has now joined the list of inventors in Cruise, however, bringing the value of the funding round to a significant $2.75 billion. American software and computer giant Microsoft is also among the latest investors in Cruise.
Wal-Mart is interested in potentially using Cruise’s self-driving vehicle technology to facilitate driverless package deliveries in metropolitan areas. Cruise teamed up with Wal-Mart last year to trial the autonomous delivery service via a pilot project held in Phoenix, Arizona using its fleet of self-driving Chevy Bolt EV test vehicles.
“The investment will aid our work towards developing a last mile delivery ecosystem that’s fast, low-cost and scalable,” Walmart CEO John Furner said in a prepared statement.
Wal-Mart said last year that it was interested in Cruise as it is the only self-driving car company to “operate an entire fleet of all-electric vehicles powered with 100% renewable energy, which supports our road to zero emissions by 2040.”
Honda is also heavily invested in Cruise, investing $750 million into the company back in 2018 with the promise of committing an additional $2 billion through to 2030. Honda worked with Cruise and GM to design and develop the Cruise Origin, the company’s first fully autonomous robotaxi design. Honda will also import the Origin into Japan for testing starting later this year with the eventual goal of launching a MaaS (mobility-as-a-service) business using the autonomous taxi sometime in the near future.
Cruise also announced this week that it will begin to deploy the Origin robotaxi on the streets of Dubai starting in 2023. Cruise will have exclusive access to autonomous taxi services in the United Arab Emirates city through 2029.
The Cruise Origin will enter production at the automaker’s Factory Zero plant in Michigan sometime in 2022.