Uber reportedly planning an April IPO

SoftBank, Toyota in talks to invest $1B in Uber's self-driving unit: Report

Uber Technologies Inc is in advanced discussions to sell a $1bn stake in its costly self-driving auto unit to a consortium of investors led by SoftBank Group Corp, people familiar with the plans said.

Under the talks, which were first reported by the Wall Street Journal, SoftBank's Vision Fund, Toyota, and others would take a minority stake in Uber's autonomous driving business. The plans aren't finalised and could fall apart.

Uber and SoftBank declined to comment. The company has burned through more than $10bn in its lifetime, and the development of autonomous cars accounts for a sizeable chunk.

Uber Technologies Inc. has advanced the launch of its initial public offering (IPO) from later this year to April, the same month Lyft, its closest rival, will launch its own IPO.

Toyota, the largest automobile maker of Japan, also invested $500 million into Uber a year ago, for its project on self-driven cars, where both companies can be seen as straggling competitors just like, Waymo, a self-driving unit of Alphabet Inc. Uber assembled the early team by pillaging a Carnegie Mellon lab, which sparked a backlash in the academic community.

After losing about $3.3 billion previous year, Uber is hoping to bring a change in the automobile industry by introducing self-driven cars.

Since Uber still has weeks of preparation before releasing third IPO, Lyft has a great shot at issuing Lyft IPO before Uber gets a chance to do so, which will help the company avoid being overshadowed by Uber that undoubtedly has more operational force in oppose to Lyft. The investment group led by SoftBank, Uber's largest shareholder, would include other backers, and possibly at least one automaker, though their identities couldn't be learned.

It's a somewhat curious move for SoftBank.

Following the death of a pedestrian in Arizona a year ago by Uber's one of self-driving cars, the developing technology came under a greater inspection. The former previously invested in Uber and in 2018 made a $2.25 billion investment in General Motors' self-driving vehicle division.

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