- Toyota is investing $US500 million ($AU680 million) into Uber, according to The Wall Street Journal.
- The investment round values Uber at $US72 billion ($98 billion), The Journal said.
- Toyota and Uber are said to be partnering to develop self-driving car technology, an area where Uber has struggled.
Toyota will invest $US500 million into Uber at a mammoth $US72 billion valuation, according to a new report from The Wall Street Journal citing people familiar with the matter. The investment will reportedly focus on autonomous-vehicle technology.
Uber and the Japanese auto giant have previously been in talks about both self-driving technology and more-general opportunities. Toyota invested in Uber in 2016 alongside an auto-leasing deal. And a report in March said Uber was discussing selling self-driving tech to the company.
A representative for Uber did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment, and Uber declined to comment to The Journal. A representative for Toyota was not immediately available for comment.
Uber has previously been valued at $US69 billion in a private venture-capital investment round, though SoftBank invested in the California firm in December at a $US48 billion valuation.
Uber has said it considers self-driving technology crucial to its future – but it has had a bumpy ride.
It was caught up in a high-profile trade-secrets lawsuit over Anthony Levandowski, an executive it hired away from Waymo, the self-driving-car startup spun out of Google. And in March, one of Uber’s self-driving vehicles hit and killed a woman in Arizona in what appeared to be the first pedestrian fatality involving an autonomous vehicle.
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