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SAIC, Toyota, Bosch Back Chinese Autonomous Startup Momenta's $500M Funding Round

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China’s autonomous driving start-up, Momenta, secured $500 million from SAIC Motor, Toyota Motor Corp (NYSE: TM), and auto parts supplier Bosch for an undisclosed valuation. The company has crossed over $700 million in total funding, marking an important step towards the firm’s international expansion, Reuters reports.

  • Other investors in the funding round include Daimler AG (OTC: DMLRY) (OTC: DDAIF), Temasek, Yunfeng Capital, and Tencent Holdings Ltd (OTC: TCEHY). Momenta reportedly exceeded $1 billion in valuation in two years.
  • Momenta’s Chinese rivals Pony.ai amassed over $1 billion within five years, and WeRide.ai raised over $500 million by capturing investments from big automakers. Pony.ai raked $5.3 billion in its November fundraising round.
  • The former Microsoft Corp (NASDAQ: MSFT) executive, Cao Xudong-led firm, tested autonomous cars in Beijing and Suzhou and owned a research center in Germany’s Stuttgart.
  • Momenta worked with automakers to develop mass-production vehicles with self-driving functions to gather real-time data for fully autonomous driving technologies for future products.
  • Momenta aimed reduction of billions of dollars in expenditure by crowdsourcing data from auto partners. 
  • Momenta expected all of its vehicles to go driverless in 2024 by which it expects to significantly reduced labor costs and accomplish a positive operating margin per vehicle.
  • Multiple customers are expected to commence mass-producing mid-to-high-end cars equipped with Momenta’s software by 2021 end. Momenta’s solutions could be powering millions of vehicles by 2024 or 2025.
  • Toyota last year partnered with Momenta to develop a high definition (HD) mapping platform in China for autonomous driving vehicles.
 

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