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U.S. Approves Softbank's $2.25 Billion Cruise Investment

General Motors CEO Mary Barra

image: General Motors

A U.S. national security panel has approved a $2.25 billion investment in GM Cruise by the Softbank Vision Fund, the self-driving company has said. The deal may have met scrutiny over concerns of Japan-based Softbank's ties to Chinese firms amid a growing trade war between the U.S. and China. The Softbank Vision Fund has backed several Chinese companies, to name some; ZhongAn Insurance, Didi Chuxing, OneConnect, Full Truck Alliance and Guazi.

Softbank's investment in GM Cruise was cleared by Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), a regulatory body that reviews foreign investments in U.S. companies. For Softbank's investment to go through, an assurance that Cruise's tech will be off limits to Softbank had to be made, Reuters reports.

GM Cruise CEO Dan Ammann

image: General Motors

“Today’s news is another important step toward achieving our goal to develop and deploy self-driving vehicles at massive scale,” Cruise CEO Dan Ammann said in a statement to Reuters. The approval of  Softbank's investment unlocks a board seat for the Japanese company.

GM Cruise recently raised an additional $1.15 billion from a group of investors that also included the Softbank Vision Fund. Softbank has also backed other self-driving companies. The company led a $940 million round for Nuro earlier this year and participated in a $1 billion round for Uber ATG this April.



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