Online retail giant Amazon and American auto giant General Motors are reportedly in talks over buying minority stakes in upcoming EV manufacturer Rivian.
Citing internal sources, Reuters on Monday reported that Amazon and GM were in talks to invest in Rivian Automotive LLC in a deal that will value the latter between $1 billion and $2 billion. GM and Amazon’s stakes in the Michigan-based startup can provide a major boost for its aspirations to be the first carmaker in the US market with an electric pickup.
The Rivian R1T pickup truck was unveiled at the 2018 LA Auto Show with 640km of maximum range
If the negotiations conclude successfully, a deal could be announced as early as this month, the sources said. Amazon and General Motors did not respond to Reuter’s requests for comment.
This news comes alongside Amazon’s investments in US-based self-driving startup Aurora Innovation. While the actual figures of the investment were not disclosed in the company’s announcement, the company raised a total of $530 million in its latest round of investment.
This was in addition to other investors such as venture capital firm Sequoia and the investment branch of Shell. On Sunday, the retail giant told CNBC that the investments in the company were made at a time when the company was seeking “innovative, customer-obsessed companies”.
Aurora was founded by Waymo’s former Chief Technical Officer Chris Urmson.
Having spent a massive $27 billion just on delivering packages last year, Amazon’s investment in Aurora could be primarily aimed at cost-cutting. Aurora has grown to be one of the larger startup firms for self-driving car technology barring automakers themselves and companies that other automakers have purchased outright. In its current trajectory, Aurora has no plans to focus on the “hardware” aspect. Instead, it has joined hands with other automakers such as VW, Hyundai and Byton. Each of these companies aims to launch their own self-driving cars by early next decade.
Aurora was founded by Waymo’s former Chief Technical Officer Chris Urmson. Additionally, the Chief Product Officer, Sterling Anderson led the design and launch for the Tesla Model X.