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Chinese self-driving startup WeRide files for US IPO

March 15, 2023 10:25 am

WeRide.ai, one of the China's most influential autonomous driving company, has confidentially filed to go public in the US, Bloomberg reported on Monday, citing sources familiar with the matter.

The company hopes to raise up to $500 million in an initial public offering, possibly in the first half of 2023, the sources said.

WeRide, valued at $4.4 billion in a March 2022 funding round, also reportedly proposes outsourcing data collection to an entity not part of the planned US listing to stay clear of regulatory norms.

Founded in 2017 by Tony Han, a former executive at Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com, WeRide focuses on developing Level 4 autonomous driving technology and has offices in Guangzhou, Beijing, Shanghai and Silicon Valley.

Level 4 autonomous driving technology means that the vehicle can operate without human intervention under certain conditions. 

WeRide has partnerships with several major Chinese automakers, including Nissan, Dongfeng Motor, and Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi. 

In 2019, WeRide launched a robotaxi service in Guangzhou, becoming the first company in China to offer such a service.