Scania, Grab establish CVCs. Daimler's startup moves analyzed. CA autonomous disengagement reports.
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Get off my lawn

Hi there,

The world's oldest automaker has become a frequent sight in tech blog headlines of late, as Daimler turns to startups to stay abreast of rapid developments in mobility and auto tech.

This week's tie-up with Uber, an agreement to deploy autonomous Mercedes vehicles on Uber's network, was just the latest in a flurry of moves from Stuttgart. We analyzed Daimler's activity since 2013 using CB Insights data:

The partnership is the first opening of a TNC's platform to a major third-party OEM who will own and operate its autonomous vehicles (excluding GM and Lyft, whose relationship also involves a $500M investment).

The move is also yet another hedge in Daimler's diverse mobility strategy, involving the company's own moovel subsidiary, acquisitions and majority stakes (myTaxi, Hailo, Taxibeat), asset buys (FlightCar), and investments (Blacklane). Also covered is Daimler's exploration of autonomous delivery drones, which we've touched on in the past.

Like Ford, Daimler's investments thus have been accomplished without a distinct corporate venture unit, although this week's news prove that establishing CVC arms is still top of mind for many OEMs (see below).

The official press releases solely referenced "cars", but Uber's buildout of its Freight service and Daimler's development of autonomous trucks may pave the way for an expanded partnership down the road.

Have a great rest of the week.


Tracking Daimler’s startup and accelerator activity

The world's oldest automaker turns to startups as it hopes to stay abreast of rapid auto tech and mobility developments. See the visualization.
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Ride-hailing deals, funding fall in 2016

Both global deal activity and total funding dropped 19% in full-year 2016 amid a tightening financing environment. Check out the data.
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Auto tech startup financing tops $1 billion in 2016

Deals and dollars both rocketed to annual records as investors scramble to claim their stakes in the mobility gold rush. See out the data.
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This Week in Auto Tech
A curated mix of recent articles on auto tech financings, exits, announcements, hirings, partnerships & perspectives.
Deals & Funds
GoKid raises $1M. The Techstars Mobility alum has closed a seed funding from Fontinalis Partners and Jaguar Land Rover's InMotion Ventures, marking the latter's first investment.

NUVIZ raises from strategic. The motorcycle heads-up display startup has raised over $5M from Pierer Industrie AG, the parent of Husqvarna Motorcycles.
BusinessWire / SEC

ClearMotion raises $100M. Citing CB Insights data, Bloomberg reported on the financing of the alternative suspension startup from NEA, Qualcomm Ventures, and JP Morgan, among other investors.

Scania establishes CVC fund. The Volkswagen Group truck brand has launched Scania Growth Capital.
Automotive World

Grab's $100M fund. The Singapore-based TNC will invest $100M in promising mobile payments and transportation startups in Southeast Asia.


Techstars Mobility 2017. The Detroit-based accelerator has opened applications for its next class.

Company & Regulatory News
Uber and Daimler partner. The German automaker will deploy and operate autonomous vehicles on Uber's network.

Vespa's personal cargo robot. Piaggio Group, the makers of Vespa scooters, have unveiled cargo robot capable of hauling up to 40 pounds.

Amazon plans Kentucky air hub. The facility would support the ecommerce giant's expanding cargo air fleet.

Autonomous disengagement reports. The California DMV has released disengagement reports provided by automakers testing self-driving cars in the state.


Tesla drops the "Motors". Elon Musk's company has shortened its name to simply "Tesla", reflecting its broader ambitions in the energy and battery markets.
The Verge

Connected car fuels Microsoft Azure. Redmond's cloud business nearly doubled last quarter thanks to business from automakers like BMW, Toyota, and others.

Articles & Perspectives
Details on Aurora Innovation.
 More on the self-driving startup founded by ex-Googler Chris Urmson and Tesla Autopilot alum Sterling Anderson, which was hit by a Tesla lawsuit last week.


More on Nio. A profile on Padmasree Warrior, CEO of Nio USA (the Chinese-backed EV startup formerly known as NextEV). 
SF Chronicle

The bicycle problem. Bikes pose a difficult detection problem for current autonomous driving systems.
IEEE Spectrum

Regaining control of an autonomous car. Jalopnik's suggestions for the 26 seconds you might have: eating a burger (quickly), tweeting, and crashing.
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