Tech

Self-driving truck developer Tu Simple plans unmanned driving test this year

Self-driving company Tu Simple Holdings Co., Ltd.

An autonomous truck without a backup driver will be tested on public roads in Arizona later this year, according to executives at the new public company.

With offices in the United States and China, TuSimple raised $ 1.08 billion through an initial public offering, which sold about 33.8 million shares on Thursday. Beyond the price range shown, the company set a share price of $ 40 per share and gave it approximately $ 8.49 billion in capital.

After opening at $ 40.25, stocks stumbled and fell about 20%. However, he recovered much of the loss and closed at $ 40.

“I think it was a rough awakening for a few hours as a publicly traded company, but we are optimistic,” said Pat Dillon, Chief Financial Officer.

Cheng Lu said the company plans to run a “driver-out” pilot program in the fourth quarter of about 100 miles between Tucson and Phoenix. It was.

The company owns 50 trucks being tested in the southwestern United States and about 20 more trucks in China, and is driven by two people.Its supporters include commercial truck maker Navistar International. Co., Ltd.

With major US truck carriers, including Werner Enterprises based in Omaha, Nebraska Co., Ltd.

Schneider National based in Green Bay, Wisconsin Co., Ltd.

Lu said the unmanned pilot program is to move customers’ cargo, and the company is working closely with Arizona’s transportation authorities to coordinate operations. He made no statement as to whether the unmanned pilot would include a single truck or multiple vehicles.

Logistics report details

“We will demonstrate our ability to take drivers out on limited routes,” he said. “We are very careful and very tactical about this.”

TuSimple was the first self-driving company to be listed on the US exchange, and is attracting attention for its strong ties with China, including its large-scale business and investor base.

Lu said TuSimple and China’s online media conglomerate Sina Corp. will comply with the 2017 Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (Cfius) survey of investment in Sina affiliates. He said the two companies are still preparing a joint response to a survey conducted by Cfius on March 1.

Sun Dream Inc., an affiliate of Sina registered in the Cayman Islands, is TuSimple’s largest individual shareholder and is managed by Sina’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. According to a regulatory filing, Sun Dream planned to sell about 20% of its stake in the IPO, but still retains two board seats.

“I can’t guess if it’s due to Cfius or for some other reason,” Lu said Sun Dream is reducing its stake. However, due to the strong investor demand for IPOs, “we have suggested that perhaps some of our senior shareholders can sell.”

TuSimple has previously recognized the challenge of reassuring predictable public market investors, even though they are still building new technology and forecasting their first commercial revenue in 2024. Was there. There were no imminent plans to raise additional funding for a commercial launch in 2024.

Write to Jennifer Smith (jennifer.smith@wsj.com) and Heather Somerville (Heather.Somerville@wsj.com)

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Self-driving truck developer Tu Simple plans unmanned driving test this year

Source link Self-driving truck developer Tu Simple plans unmanned driving test this year

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