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


The deal would value the self-driving business at $5 billion to $10 billion, the people said.

Uber, a global logistics and transportation company most recently valued at $US76 billion ($108 billion) in the private market, is seeking a valuation as high as $US120 billion, although some analysts have pegged its value closer to $US100 billion based on selected financial figures it has disclosed.

But Uber is under scrutiny for its losses - its net loss was $842 million in the fourth quarter - and self-driving technologies are expensive. The late-stage discussions were reported earlier on Wednesday by the Wall Street Journal. A $1 billion infusion could ease worries about how costly it is to develop autonomous cars. The company lost $911 million.

In 2018, Uber stopped testing its self-driving cars for nine months after one of its vehicles killed a pedestrian in Arizona.A Business Insider investigation found that the pressure to catch up with competitors led to Uber's self-driving group to make several questionable decisions before the fatal crash.

Uber receives $100 million in funding for its driverless cars unit. As part of an agreement with employees, the company rewarded them with equity in Uber Freight as a stand-alone business late a year ago.

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If all goes to plan, commuters could ride an e-scooter to a transit station, take a train, then grab an e-bike, share a ride or take an e-scooter at the arriving station to complete a journey - all using an Uber app on a smartphone.

Uber, which a year ago lost about $3.3 billion, is wagering on a progress to self-driving vehicles to dispose of the need to pay drivers. In June, the Japanese technology conglomerate agreed to invest billions in another self-driving business, General Motor Co's Cruise.

The news also comes at the heels of SoftBank's aggressive strategy of heavily investing in AV programs across the industry.

Uber and SoftBank declined to comment to Reuters, while Toyota said it didn't have anything to announce.