Why it matters: Uber’s future almost certainly involves autonomous vehicles as not having to pay drivers would save the company a considerable amount of money. The best way to do that - whether it's by continuing to develop its own self-driving technology or partnering with someone else on the initiative - seems to be a point of contention among investors.
Some investors are suggesting to Uber that it offload its self-driving vehicle unit, a source familiar with the matter tells The Information.
Uber has reportedly sunk at least $2 billion into the money-hungry division over the past three years, the publication says, and has spent between $125 million and $200 million on it per quarter over the past six quarters.
Uber shut down its self-driving truck project last month in order to focus exclusively on its driverless car segment. The division’s future was in limbo following an accident in March that killed a pedestrian in Arizona.
CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has been open to the idea of partnering with someone else on its self-driving venture and according to The Information, some executives believe he might even agree to transfer the unit to another company if he can get some sort of guarantee in return that they’d have access to future self-driving cars.
With a potential public offering is expected as early as next year, Khosrowshahi may need to make a decision on the autonomous vehicle unit sooner rather than later.