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TuSimple raises $215 million in ‘oversubscribed’ Series D funding round

Autonomous haulage truck developer TuSimple has raised $215 million in its Series D funding round.

TuSimple says the new funds are “part of an extended Series D round that was oversubscribed and reached a total of $215 million”.

The round includes previously announced investor UPS, the global logistics company.

New participants in the round include CDH Investments and leading automotive tier-1 supplier Mando Corporation.

The Series D round was led by Sina, a technology company known for Weibo, one of the world’s most popular social media platforms.

TuSimple previously achieved unicorn status with a valuation of $1 billion, and the new investment brings TuSimple’s total funding to $298 million to date.

The new funds will be used to expand long haul service for fleets and co-develop a commercial self-driving truck with OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers.

Jae Chung, CFO, Mando, says: “TuSimple continues to impress the automotive and investor community with its progress towards creating the world’s first commercial self-driving truck solution.

“TuSimple’s technology is at a pivotal point for maturity and it has huge market potential, which is why we wanted to deepen our relationship with TuSimple and become a strategic investor.”

TuSimple is moving quickly to bring commercial self-driving trucks to market. The company has grown rapidly to over 500 employees worldwide and is executing daily runs in Arizona for its customers.

At the same time, TuSimple is working on the validation of its self-driving truck solution with logistics leaders UPS, the USPS and others.

Cheng Lu, chief financial officer, TuSimple, says: “It’s highly gratifying to see such strong interest in TuSimple from investors and industry leaders alike, and we are grateful for the support of our committed investors.

“With over 50 trucks on the road worldwide and more than 18 contracted customers, we are excited about the momentum the company has achieved in four short years.”

TuSimple says UPS’ investment is a vote of confidence in its position in the industry, and its technology and autonomous trucks in general.

UPS’ investment also marks a first-of-its-kind strategic investment from a shipper into self-driving trucks.

Currently UPS and TuSimple conduct daily testing between Phoenix and Tucson. TuSimple says working side-by-side with a global logistics giant is critical for the startup to further develop and scale its technology.

The real-world experience gives TuSimple strict customer requirements to ensure their solution meets UPS’s customer service expectations.

TuSimple is aiming to transform the $800 billion US trucking industry by increasing safety, lowering costs, reducing carbon emissions and providing tools to optimize fleet logistics for operators.