The car-sharing, ride-hailing, and ride-sharing software platform provider Ridecell has acquired the California-based self-driving vehicle tech developer Auro, according to a new press release from the firm. As a part of the deal, the Auro development team will now be known as the Ridecell Autonomous Driving Division.
Accompanying this news, the company also just launched the public availability of its autonomous operations platform. Taken together, the two announcements now mean that Ridecell is offering “the industry’s first complete autonomous new mobility solution that enables on-demand autonomous shuttle mobility service in low-speed, private-road settings,” if the press release is to be believed.
“The Auro acquisition and the launch of our autonomous operations platform represent the next phase of our strategy to provide a complete autonomous solution for Ridecell customers,” stated Aarjav Trivedi, CEO of Ridecell. “We can now provide even more value for our autonomous customers and help mobility operators launch new carsharing, ridesharing, and on-demand shuttle services today that will accommodate the addition of autonomous vehicles without the need to change the underlying platform. The acquisition makes it possible to launch a proven autonomous shuttle service today in settings such as corporate and college campuses.”
The press release provides more: “Ridecell will be able to extensively test its autonomous operations platform in real-world environments through integration of Auro-enabled driverless shuttles in private road environments. Ridecell will continue to collaborate with autonomous leaders to apply the Ridecell platform to the world’s leading self-driving vehicles for automated management of operational tasks such as cleaning, refueling, and emergency response situations.”
As a bit of further background here, Auro was founded back in 2013 by researchers from Indian Institutes of Technology and Carnegie Mellon University, is backed by the Y Combinator and Motus venture funds, and has now deployed driverless shuttles in a number of places, including on the Santa Clara University campus.
If you missed it, Ridecell presented at our most recent Cleantech Revolution Tour conference in Berlin. Prior to this autonomous vehicle move, its hottest recent news was that it was combining carsharing tech with ride-hailing/on-demand taxi tech. For more on that, see: Carsharing & On-Demand Taxis Transforming Transport, & Can Now Be Combined.