Trouble brews for Arrival, TuSimple ousts its CEO, and Cruise expands to San Francisco • TechCrunch


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Too much news, so let’s go.

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Micromobilist

Much of the conversation surrounding shared micromobility in cities has a negative valence.

Coverage often focuses on scooter accidents, devices parked haphazardly on the sidewalk, and congestion from too many scooter operators. But these fail to highlight the environmental and economic benefits that micromobility brings to cities.

For instance, Lime recently provided its scooter data to Germany’s Fraunhofer ISI research institute, and the organization found that shared electric scooters help reduce carbon emissions in urban transport networks. Researchers surveyed Lime cyclists in spring 2022 in Stockholm, Paris, Melbourne, Berlin, Seattle and Düsseldorf and found that in each city, if scooters and shared bikes had not been available, significant numbers of cyclists would have made their last trips. by car, taxi or carpool.

Researchers also looked at a life cycle analysis of Lime’s latest Gen4 electric bikes and scooters to measure the carbon footprint of cradle-to-grave service and found that shared micromobility further reduces the carbon emissions it emits. .

I also mentioned the economic impact of shared micromobility.

Two separate reports of So and Neuron show that the availability of e-scooters and e-bikes has improved accessibility to main streets and major shopping areas, which have been suffering since the pandemic, and has had a positive impact on spending in several cities.

The Voi study, which was carried out by economic consultancy firm Volterra, focused on selected cities in the UK and revealed an expected increase in retail and food and drink spending to a total of £37m, which would otherwise have been spent online or off. – commercial parks in the city. This boost should help support up to 1,400 jobs. In addition, the study found that e-scooter operations could result in a £1.2 billion increase for the test areas studied struggling with high streets if introduced permanently due to the increased purchases of food and beverages only.

Neuron’s study looked at the impact of e-scooters in Brisbane, Australia and found that 66.4% of rides resulted in a purchase. Of these, 42.2% of passengers bought food and drink, 32.5% bought something in retail and 17.9% visited a gym, movie or event. . The average spend for each passenger ride was $61.05. From 2021 to 2022, Neuron estimates that its service has contributed $116.6 million in direct, indirect and facilitated economic activity to Brisbane’s economy. Queensland Economic Advocacy Solutions supported these findings and found that Neuron’s estimated economic contribution to Brisbane’s economy could reach $160.5 million by 2026 to 2027.

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Offer of the week

money station

This week, we’re just compiling a list of Deals that caught my attention this week. Let’s go:

Aventon received backing from Sequoia China, taking the e-bike maker’s post-money valuation to $590 from $200 million eight months ago.

Mobility Miles, a German startup, acquired UMI Urban Mobility International GmbH from Volkswagen Passenger Cars and with it the car-sharing business WeShare. Neither party disclosed financial terms of the deal. Miles said he plans to integrate WeShare’s 2,000 VW-branded electric vehicles into his fleet. It also plans to order more than 10,000 100% electric vehicles from Audi, Seat/Cupra and Volkswagen Passenger Cars, with delivery scheduled for 2023.

Newtrulwhich describes itself as Expedia for booking freight, raised $5.3 million in a round led by SignalFire and Flex Capital as well as previously unannounced investors including Bessemer Venture Partners, Crowley, CEO Oren Zaslansky of Flock Freight, John Larkin and Brad Hollister.

Volocopter, a German startup that builds electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) vehicles, has secured $182 million for the second signing of its E-series round. This is in addition to the $170 million Volocopter has raised for the same turn in March to a post-money valuation of $1.87 billion.

Want more offers? A whole list of them were in the subscription version this week. Subscribe for free here.

Notable reads and other tidbits

Trouble brews for Arrival, TuSimple ousts its CEO, and Cruise expands to San Francisco • TechCrunch

Autonomous vehicles

Argo AI The lidar unit, a team of 80 people and the lidar technology they developed, is being purchased by Ford and VW. The two automakers, which invested $3.6 billion in Argo AI and then abruptly pulled support and shut it down, are seeking to extract any remaining value from the AV company.

Dawn said in its third-quarter results that it will have enough cash to continue developing its self-driving vehicle technology until its commercial launch in mid-2024 – an effort to appease shareholders amid tightening market conditions. capital market and a week after the sudden shutdown of its competitor Argo AI. But wait! Aurora said it will need to raise capital; the company did not share when that will have to happen.

Cruise CEO Kyle Vogt tweeted that its driverless robotaxi service is spread to most of San Francisco. This expanded area is only available to employees at this time.

Waymo also expanded its robotaxi service in downtown Phoenix to now include pickups and drop-offs at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. (Technically it’s at the 44th Street Sky Train station, which is the furthest stop on the train from the airport and takes people directly to the terminals) Waymo’s airport rides, which are only open ‘to the ‘trust tester’ program for now, will use human security operator.

XPeng received a permit to start testing its G9 electric SUV as an autonomous vehicle on public roads in Guangzhou. The company will start testing a small fleet as soon as possible with a human safety operator in place of the driver.

Electric vehicles, batteries and charging

Arrival is in the midst of a restructuring – the second in six months – and has received a warning from the Nasdaq Stock Market that it could be delisted.

But that’s only the tip of the company’s woes, according to a recent Financial Times article that describes a company struggling with setbacks, a recent vehicle fire witnessed by its biggest customer and a distracting side project. to make an electric jet. . Morale in some parts of the business, writes journalist Peter Campbell, has sunk to “bottom”.

Fisker raised its manufacturing forecast two weeks before its first electric vehicle, the Ocean SUV, goes into production. The automaker said it plans to produce 42,400 Ocean SUVs by the end of 2023, against an initial forecast of 40,000, due to strong demand in the United States and Europe.

Precursor enginesa commercial electric vehicle company focused on medium-duty chassis platforms used in the RV industry, has partnered with the RV manufacturing giant THOR Industries.

Saudi Arabia sovereign wealth fund has formed a joint venture with foxcon build and sell electric vehicles. The new brand is called Ceer and will use component technology from BMW/

VTC

Lyft is laying off 13% of its workforce, or nearly 700 people, as it tries to reduce its operating costs.

Uber’s The new advertising division includes in-app advertisements, which do not remain within the app. Users are inundated with push notifications highlighting advertisements from other companies.

People

Comma.ai founder George Hotz said it’s moving away “from the time” of the driver assistance system boot that promises to bring Tesla Autopilot-like functionality to your car. In a lengthy interview, Hotz gave me an update on Comma (which raised $10 million last year) and what he plans to do next. He will remain its sole administrator and president.

TuSimple co-founder Xiaodi Hou was fired from his positions as CEO, President and CTO by the autonomous trucking company’s board of directors. Hou, who co-founded TuSimple in 2015 with Mo Chen, was also removed as chairman of the board and a member of the board’s government security committee.

The dismissal came a day after the WSJ published a report citing unnamed sources that TuSimple was facing concurrent investigations from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Committee on Foreign Investment in the US (CFIUS ). The investigation apparently focuses on TuSimple’s relationship with Hydron, a hydrogen trucking company run by TuSimple co-founder Chen and backed by Chinese investors.

Hou took to LinkedIn to defend himself, saying the board voted to remove him without cause.

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