General Motors has won US antitrust approval for the acquisition of Silicon Valley startup Cruise Automation, the Federal Trade Commission said.
General Motors is ready to go to the next level of the development of its self-driving cars, as it received the OK to buy the Cruise Automation company. The transaction was on the list of deals that the Federal Trade Commission and Justice Department granted “early termination,” essentially quick antitrust approval. The biggest automaker in the United States announced two weeks ago it was buying San Francisco-based Cruise Automation, an autonomous driving startup founded in 2013, to support GM in its efforts to bring smart-independent cars on the road as soon as possible.
Even if the purchase price has not been disclosed, some media reports said the automaker paid more than 1 billion dollars in cash and stock. General Motors lately made multiple moves in the autonomous direction, as in January it formed up a dedicated team to oversee the further progress of such technologies.
However, such a massive investment has raised some concerns among analysts and investors who are wondering if such a financial effort is justified given that the automaker’s profits are forecasted to stay flat in the coming years. GM also announced earlier this year a 500-million-dollar partnership with Lyft to develop an on-demand network of autonomous vehicles, as part of a 1-billion-dollar fund-raising round by the ride-sharing service.