Here’s a short summary on the most newsworthy reads this week:
Scooter-startup Bird is expanding
Bird is expanding to Paris and Tel Aviv. The pilot programs will start with 50–100 scooters and then scale up from there. In Paris, they will be available in the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd arrondissements, and the pilot program will begin in Tel Aviv in partnership with Tel Aviv University.
BMW to build a factory in Hungary
The new factory is supposed to cost about €1 billion, produce up to 150.000 vehicles per year and employ 1000 people close to the town of Debrecen.
Waymo partners with Walmart
The company is launching a test pilot in Arizona with Walmart later this week that will provide riders with discounts on groceries that are ordered through the supermarket chain’s website. While those orders are being prepared by Walmart employees, Waymo will transport customers to and from their homes to pick up their groceries.
Grab gets $2 billion in funding
Grab Holdings Inc. (Grab), Southeast Asia’s leading O2O mobile platform, announced today it has raised US$2 billion for its current round of financing. Toyota Motor Corporation (Toyota) has been joined by a slate of leading global financial institutions, including OppenheimerFunds, Ping An Capital, Mirae Asset – Naver Asia Growth Fund, Cinda Sino-Rock Investment Management Company, All-Stars Investment, Vulcan Capital, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Macquarie Capital and other investors, underscoring Grab’s aim to be the leading technology player in the region.
Didi Chuxing to buy Ofo
The struggling Chinese bike-sharing startup Ofo is close to being acquired by its investor and ride-hailing major Didi Chuxing. Founded in 2014, Ofo has raised $2.2 billion so far, from investors including internet giant Alibaba and Sequoia Capital, but recently came into trouble and pulled out of markets in Germany, India, Australia, and Israel.