Waymo and Uber agree settlement | Smart Highways Magazine: Industry News

Waymo and Uber agree settlement

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Uber is handing $245 million worth of its own shares to Alphabet Inc’s Waymo self-driving vehicle unit to settle a legal dispute over trade secrets.

Reuters says that the settlement will allow Uber’s chief executive to “move past one of the company’s most bruising public controversies”.

The settlement announcement has brought an abrupt halt to the legal case between the two companies in San Francisco in which Waymo had alleged that one of its former engineers who became chief of Uber’s self-driving car project took with him thousands of confidential documents.

“The lawsuit cost Uber precious time in its self-driving car ambition, which is a key to its long-term profitability,” says Reuters. “Uber fired its self-driving chief after Waymo sued, and it is well behind on its plans to deploy fleets of autonomous cars in one of the most lucrative races in Silicon Valley.”

The report continues that the settlement allows Uber’s chief executive officer, Dara Khosrowshahi, “to put another scandal behind the company” and move ahead with development of self-driving technology, following the tumultuous leadership by former CEO Travis Kalanick, who testified at the trial on Tuesday and Wednesday.

As part of the deal, Waymo gets a 0.34 percent stake in Uber, worth about $245 million based on Uber’s current $72 billion valuation, a Waymo representative said. The settlement includes an agreement to ensure that Waymo confidential information is not being incorporated into Uber technology, which Waymo has said was its main goal in bringing the lawsuit.

 
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