Not long ago, the self driving car was talked about as futuristic tech that was decades away, in the same way we think about flying cars today. Thanks to startups, a driverless future without a steering wheel or a gas pedal is now an inevitability – the only question is when.
Tesla, Uber, Lyft, Waymo, and incumbent automakers that are feeling the competitive pressure, are accelerating the advent of autonomous tech. The rush to develop self-driving cars is fueling GM's $1 billion acquisition of Cruise, Uber buying Otto for $680 million, Ford’s $1 billion Argo Ai project, and Intel acquiring Mobileye for $15.3 billion.
According to Forbes, engineers working on self-driving tech can command $400,000 a year in the Bay Area.
Autonomous is the space to be at in 2018. With relevant skills like computer vision, AI, and robotics in high-demand, as well as other essential roles in marketing, recruiting, sales, and operations, all hands on deck are needed to make driverless cars a reality this coming decade.
Some of these companies have raised significant funding in recent weeks, as investors place their bets on the eventual breakout winners in the space, as well as the new industries that will emerge.
Zoox is the most mysterious member of the self-driving car club, an exclusive list of 50 companies that are allowed to operate autonomous vehicles in CA. The startup raised a $250M Series A from Lux Capital and DFJ. Zoox is hiring in multiple positions in the Bay Area.
Pony.ai aims to build the the safest most reliable autonomous driving tech. In January, the one year old startup raised a $112M Series A.
Cruise, which now leads GM's autonomous tech efforts, recently showed off a robocar without a steering wheel it plans to launch as early as next year (pictured in header). Cruise is hiring in SF.
Nauto raised a $159M Series B from Softbank and Greylock to make self-driving safer. The company gathers data about human drivers and their behavior to improve safety through its autonomous data platform.
AImotive raised $38M in its third round of funding just a few days ago. The company specialized in making software that can take the data from autonomous car cameras and sensors and identify pedestrians.
Ouster makes the world's most capable LIDAR sensor, and raised a $27M Series A back in December.
Embark makes self-driving trucks. The company went through YC and aims to revolutionize commercial transport. Embark is hiring. Check out the video of their tech.