Cruise and General Motors have announced a long-term strategic relationship with Microsoft to accelerate the commercial development of autonomous vehicles. According to a recent press release, the companies aim to bring together their collective resources, including software and hardware engineering, cloud computing, manufacturing, and partner ecosystems to develop efficient and economical transportation.
“Our mission to bring safer, better, and more affordable transportation to everyone isn’t just a tech race – it’s also a trust race,” explained Dan Ammann, CEO of Crusie. “Microsoft, as the gold standard in the trustworthy democratization of technology, will be a force multiplier for us as we commercialize our fleet of self-driving, all-electric, shared vehicles.”
Cruise will leverage Azure, Microsoft’s cloud and edge computing platform, to commercialize and scale its autonomous vehicle solutions. As Cruise’s preferred cloud provider, Microsoft will rely on Cruise’s industry expertise to facilitate product innovation and serve transportation companies across the globe through continued investment in Azure.
Microsoft will join General Motors, Honda, and other institutional investors in a combined new equity investment of more than $2 billion in Cruise. The resulting investment will send Cruise’s post-money valuation to $30 billion.
“Advances in digital technology are redefining every aspect of our work and life, including how we move people and goods,” said Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft. “As Cruise and GM’s preferred cloud, we will apply the power of Azure to help them scale and make autonomous transportation mainstream.”
GM & Microsoft Collaboration
GM will work with Microsoft as its preferred public cloud provider to accelerate its digitization initiatives, including collaboration, storage, artificial intelligence, and machine learning capabilities. GM will also explore opportunities with Microsoft to streamline operations across digital supply chains, foster productivity, and bring new mobility services to customers faster.
“Microsoft is a great addition to the team as we drive toward a future world of zero crashes, zero emissions, and zero congestion,” added Mary Barra, GM Chairman and CEO. “Microsoft will help us accelerate the commercialization of Cruise’s all-electric, self-driving vehicles and help GM realize even more benefits from cloud computing as we launch 30 new electric vehicles globally by 2025 and create new businesses and services to drive growth.”
With regard to new businesses, GM recently announced the launch of BrightDrop, an integrated set of logistical and vehicle solutions to improve all aspects of first-to-last-mile delivery.