GM has announced that it is acquiring SoftBank Vision Fund 1’s equity ownership stake in Cruise for US$2.1bn and will invest a further US$1.35bn in the company. GM acquired a majority ownership stake in the autonomous driving company in 2016. Last month, Cruise became the first company to offer fully driverless rides to the public in a major US city (San Francisco).
“We are extremely pleased to announce GM is leveraging the strength of its balance sheet to capitalize on the opportunity to increase its equity investment in Cruise and advance our integrated autonomous vehicle strategy. We continue to believe our investment represents an extraordinary opportunity for creating long-term shareholder value,” said GM chair and CEO Mary Barra. “Our increased investment position not only simplifies Cruise’s shareholder structure but also provides GM and Cruise with maximum flexibility to pursue the most value-accretive path to commercializing and unlocking the full potential of AV technology.”
In addition to GM’s increased investment, Cruise has launched its Recurring Liquidity Opportunity program, an employee share initiative that the company hopes will keep it competitive in the talent market against public and private companies.