The Robo-Taxis Are Coming
Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) is getting into the self-driving business.
Last Friday, they acquired autonomous vehicle (AV) maker Zoox for $1.2 billion — their largest investment in the AV market yet.
And while Amazon’s push for AV delivery has been well known for a while…
CEO of Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) Elon Musk isn’t thrilled at all — and he took to Twitter to express his “concerns.”
Maybe Musk should copy Amazon back and actually turn a profit for once. Just a thought.
Twitter battles aside, this acquisition could mean big things for the AV industry.
Spending $2 Billion a Year
Like I said before, this isn’t the first time Amazon’s invested in AV technology.
Just last year, they invested in a $530 million Series B funding of Aurora to develop a virtual driver.
And most notably, Amazon’s developed a fleet of delivery drones to take packages through the skies from warehouse to your front door.
There have been plenty of hurdles, though, for all of these projects thus far…
Getting this service up and running has had massive delays.
The delivery drones, for instance, were supposed to be up and running by the end of 2019. But since the last announcement in June of last year, nothing has happened.
But Amazon’s buyout of Zoox could be a different story entirely.
Zoox is a relatively new startup with dreams of developing a fully autonomous robo-taxi — something that Musk and company have strived to develop.
The only problem for Zoox was that its development to get the ball running would have been incredibly expensive.
That’s where Amazon stepped in.
It’s expected that Amazon will have to pay an additional $2 billion per year to get the robo-taxis operational on top of the $1.2 billion they just paid.
But if they do get everything up and running, they could dethrone the kings of the AV business. And could replace names like Tesla or even Uber and Lyft.
Plus, once the system is in place, transitioning to autonomous delivery trucks would be the next step.
AV has already proven to be faster, cheaper and more reliable than human drivers in several situations.
Eliminating fatigue and human error on the roads would make it much safer for all involved.
And while estimates on when AV tech will be ready are currently unreliable…
When it does hit, AV names will take off.
AV isn’t going anywhere. And the company that eventually cracks it could make early investors a ton of money.
I’ll be keeping an eye on this story for any future developments — and for any plays that could bring you some potential profits.
To a bright future,