The self-driving car artificial intelligence (AI) start-up had first grabbed the spotlight in 2017 when the company received a USD 1 billion investment from Ford. Now, the Pittsburgh company has finalized a deal with Volkswagen that has invested USD 2.6 billion. The company plans on expanding into Europe. Autonomous Intelligent Driving, developed by Volkswagen, a subsidiary wing of the company, was merged with Argo AI. Moreover, the company will be using AID’s Munich’s office as its European head office. Argo has a lot of autonomous vehicles on the road in Austin, Washington, D.C., and Miami.
There are many other cities throughout the U.S., in which the company has established its operations. The company has announced its plans to expand its staff count to a thousand employees after the deal with Volkswagen was closed. The company makes detailed and integrated maps for the virtual driver’s system for Ford, which it is now offering to Volkswagen. The two companies will now be equipped with input from Argo and will together contribute to the R&D costs. John Lawler, LLC CEO for Ford Autonomous Vehicles, said in a blog post, “Building a safe, scalable and trusted self-driving service, however, is no small task. It’s also not a cheap one.” Ford had stated that it would be spending close to USD 4 billion by the year 2023 to form a new LLC towards the forming of the autonomous vehicle business.
John Lawler had also stated that this investment by Volkswagen does not indicate that Ford’s expenditure on Argo will be cut short. However, the two companies plan on delivering a service of a fleet of autonomous vehicles that would cater to the transportation needs of the masses. Lawler further added, “it will remain independent and fiercely competitive in building its own self-driving service.”