Walmart Signs Autonomous Last Mile Delivery Deal With Ford, Argo AI: What Investors Should Know About $7.5B Private Company

A leader in autonomous vehicle delivery is teaming up with the largest U.S. physical retailer to help with last mile delivery.

What Happened: Argo AI announced a partnership with Walmart Inc WMT and Ford Motor Company F to launch autonomous vehicle last mile delivery in three U.S. cities.

The launch cities will be Miami; Austin, Texas; and Washington, D.C. The partnership includes using Ford’s self-driving vehicles and Argo AI’s self-driving system.

Walmart customers will be able to place orders for groceries and everyday items and have them delivered to their home in the three cities.

“This collaboration will further our mission to get products to the homes of our customers with unparalleled speed and ease, and in turn, will continue to pave the way for autonomous delivery,” Walmart Senior Vice President Tom Ward said.

Testing will begin later this year for the service.

Related Link: Ford Sells Stake In Velodyne Lidar, Could Automaker Be Looking Elsewhere For Autonomous Tech

Why It’s Important: Lyft Inc LYFT entered into a partnership with Ford and Argo AI earlier this year for autonomous ride-hailing vehicles. Lyft acquired a 2.5% stake in Argo AI as part of the partnership.

Argo AI and Ford have had vehicles partnered since 2018. Walmart and Ford previously tested self-driving vehicles in 2018 in Miami.

Argo AI was valued at $7.5 billion in 2020 after receiving a $2.6 billion investment from Volkswagen Group VWAGY. Ford previously invested $1 billion in Argo AI in 2017.

Ford and Volkswagen own equal stakes in Argo AI.

Earlier this year, Argo AI was in talks to go public via traditional IPO or SPAC merger.

Photo: Courtesy Argo AI

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