Alliance Ventures leads Series A round in China’s self-driving startup WeRide.ai

Photo: Reuters

Alliance Ventures, the venture capital arm of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance, has led an undisclosed Series A round in WeRide.ai, an autonomous driving company. This is Alliance’s first investment in a Chinese startup.

WeRide.ai was previously funded by Qiming Venture Capital, Hanfor Capital, Atop Capital, Johnson Electric, Xiaopeng He, Idinvest Partners, and OceanIQ Capital.

According to an official statement, WeRide.ai plans to use the proceeds to deploy a fleet of 500 autonomous vehicles in 2019. It also plans to accumulate 5 million km of autonomous driving mileage, and conduct operation and commercialisation trials with partners in Guangzhou and Anqing.

Since launching its trial operations in China, WeRide.ai’s autonomous vehicles have clocked a total mileage of over 60,000 km and served more than 3,000 passengers worldwide.

In January, Alliance Ventures announced plans to invest up to $1 billion over five years to help Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi keep up with massive changes in the automotive industry. The VC will invest in areas such as vehicle electrification, autonomous systems and artificial intelligence.

Alliance Ventures has made five investments so far. They are: US-based battery material company, Ionic Materials; French-based microprocessor firm, Kalray; Silicon Valley-based, used car marketplace Shift; Israel-based car technology fund, Maniv Mobility; and China’s Sinovation Ventures.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.