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The Daily Download: Cruise and Walmart News

Today, we have a big deal in the autonomous vehicle space.

Self-drive automaker Cruise, backed by General Motors, has raised $2.75 billion in its latest funding round with investment from Walmart, taking the startup's valuation to over $30 billion.

The investment will help support Walmart’s push to create a home-delivery logistics network that’s fast, low-cost and scalable.

The two companies began working together in November through a delivery pilot program in Arizona. For years Walmart has dived in and out of partnerships with last-mile logistics providers like Uber, Lyft and Door-Dash, and it’s also created an internal network called Spark to do the same.

Cruise’s new valuation of more than $30 billion is up from $19 billion when T. Rowe Price invested in the company in 2019. Just as Microsoft gave Cruise a major software player in its corner, Walmart gives it a retail partner with thousands of stores and deep pockets.

Walmart’s deal won’t spell the end for the self-driving car tests it’s conducting with Waymo, the autonomous affiliate of Google, and startup Nuro.

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