Ford Makes Large Investment in CMU alumni Founded Startup Argo AI

Ford Motor Company has made an investment of $1 billion on the so-far unknown startup Argo AI, in a bid to lead the market on autonomous vehicles. The company was founded by Bryan Salesky, company CEO, and Peter Rander, company COO, both Carnegie Mellon University’s National Robotics Engineering Center alumni and former leaders on the self-driving car teams of Google and Uber, respectively.

According to the statement on Ford’s website, the “investment in Argo AI strengthens Ford’s leadership in bringing self-driving vehicles to market in the near term and creates technology that could be licensed to others in the future”.

With an investment of this size, Ford, the American multinational automaker headquartered in Michigan, effectively bought Pittsburgh-based Argo AI, by acquiring majority of capital. This move by Ford comes after GM had also bought a similar startup, Cruise, in 2016, for the same amount. 

The startup is bringing together some of the most experienced roboticists and engineers working in autonomy from inside and outside of Ford. Argo AI will operate as an independent subsidiary and will focus on developing a software platform for Ford's self-driving car, which the company is targeting for 2021.

Read the article in Portuguese at BIT Magazine Online, Automonitor Online, AutoSport Online, Tudo Sobre Rodas - AutoNews Online, Velocidades Online (February 13, 2017) Carros & Motores Online, CA Noticias Online, and PME Magazine - Portugal. Mundo. Empresas Online (February 14, 2017).