Aurora Acquires Blackmore to Leverage Doppler Lidar
It looks like Blackmore could not say no the offer from Aurora, a Canadian autonomous vehicle start-up that recently raised $530 million in Series B funding.
From an article in Wired.
In the race to develop a technology that, at its root, is about teaching robots how to understand their surroundings, Aurora just bought itself a fresh set of eyeballs. The developer of self-driving car technology announced Thursday it’s acquiring lidar maker Blackmore, whose laser scanning tech offers the unusual and very helpful ability not just to detect nearby objects but to discern their velocity. The parties declined to disclose the terms of the deal.
“These guys are the real deal,” Aurora CEO Chris Urmson says of Blackmore. “They’ve got technology we think no one else has.” The deal requires regulatory approval because Urmson is Canadian.
Urmson led Google’s self-driving car team through its early years, and cofounded Aurora in late 2016 with Sterling Anderson, who helmed the development of Tesla’s Autopilot system, and Drew Bagnell, a machine learning specialist who spent time with Uber’s autonomy wing. The startup hasn’t said much about its business model, but has partnerships with Volkswagen, Hyundai, and electric car startup Byton. In February it landed $530 million in Series B funding, a round led by Sequoia Capital and joined by Amazon. That cash made the Blackmore deal feasible, Urmson says.
Congratulations to the team at Blackmore for this successful exit.
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