Amazon just acquired Zoox, a self-driving startup company, run by Black female CEO Aicha Evans, for $1.2 Billion, Black Enterprise reports.
Zoox is the maker of self-driving vehicles built for purpose that also happen to be eco-friendly. Since 2014, the company has been testing these autonomous vehicles in Las Vegas and San Francisco, with most referring to them as a “robotaxi” service. For the last two years , Evans has been at the helm, working as CEO to help the company expand. Now, Amazon, a longstanding investor in various self-driving startups, has acquired the company for over $1 billion.
“This acquisition solidifies Zoox’s impact on the autonomous driving industry. We have made great strides with our purpose-built approach to safe, autonomous mobility, and our exceptionally talented team working every day to realize that vision. We now have an even greater opportunity to realize a fully autonomous future,” Evans said.
The online retail giant plans to use the technology to tackle last-mile deliveries, officially automating ground delivery and revolutionizing the industry. Chief Safety Innovation Officer at Zoox, Mark Rosekind, spoke about the possibilities of the partnership, saying, “We now have an even greater opportunity to realize a fully autonomous future. We’re going to start seeing [in] three to five years where people start actually deploying in cities, but it’s going to be 20 to 30 years before you start seeing this all over the place.”
Evans will help spearhead the initiative, continuing to lead in her current role as CEO.