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03/25/2021

Chipotle and Toyota Funding Nuro's Last-Mile Mission

Companies among group investing $500M to help advance pilot programs with Walmart, Kroger and CVS Health
Mike Troy
Editorial Director, Grocery Group
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Chipotle and Toyota Funding Nuro's Last Mile Mission
Leading autonomous vehicle startup Nuro has secured $500 million in Series C funding to advance its cause of innovating the last mile of delivery.

A restaurant chain and automobile manufacturer were revealed as new investors in Nuro, the autonomous vehicle startup that has partnerships with Walmart, Kroger and CVS Health.

Nuro announced a $500 million Series C funding round last November, but at the time didn’t disclose key investors. On March 25, the five-year-old company whose mission is to fundamentally change the last mile of local delivery, said Chipotle Mexican Grill and Woven Capital, part of Toyota’s venture capital group, were among the new investors. It was the first investment from Woven Capital, which was established in January 2021 with a focus on safe mobility. 

“Woven Capital’s focus on safe mobility and leading-edge technology, as well as their roots in Toyota, make them an ideal investment partner,” said Nuro co-founder and president Dave Ferguson. “Their team has a deep understanding and appreciation of our work to create a real world, autonomous delivery service, and with their backing, we are excited to shape the future of mobility and improve people’s lives.”

Other new investors include Fidelity Management & Research Co., LLC, and Baillie Gifford.

“We are thrilled to have the backing of this tremendous group of best-in-class investors to shape the future of mobility for people across the globe,” Ferguson said “The support of these financial and strategic investors from multiple continents will be a huge boost to Nuro as we commercialize and scale our local delivery product.”

Nuro bills itself as the leader in autonomous delivery and highlights the fact that it is the first, and so far the only, company to receive a permit to deploy autonomous vehicles on public streets from the California Department of Motor Vehicles. The permit is limited in scope at this point, with vehicles operations restricted to the two counties near Nuro’s Bay Area headquarters.