COVID-19 Impact

COVID-19 Impact: GM self-driving unit Cruise to lay off jobs 

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8 Percent Staff to Lose Jobs

One of the renowned companies in automotive industry, General Motors Company’s self-driving car unit Cruise has decided to lay-off its workers. By doing so the company has become the latest addition to companies cutting jobs due to the coronavirus pandemic. The Cruise officials acknowledged they were cutting jobs, but did not confirm the exact number. However, according to an internal email, about 8 percent of the staff would be cut, which amounts to more than 140 people. 

Dried up funding in Autonomous Industry

Funding in the autonomous driving industry has been dried up because of this pandemic. That is the latest challenge to the sector whose promise of the large-scale rollout of so-called robotaxis has been pushed out by many years. “In this time of great change, we are fortunate to have a crystal clear mission and billions in the bank. The actions we took today reflect us doubling down on our engineering work and engineering talent,” said Cruise spokesperson Milin Mehta. The cuts at Cruise which had 1800 full-time employees came just a week after GM Chief Executive Officer Mary Barra said the No.1 US automaker’s commitment to Cruise was unwavering and was growing the business. “Cruise is well-capitalized. We have and will continue to grow our team by recruiting and retaining the very best engineering and leadership talent,’ she further added.

Staff Working on Lidar under the Pump

The mail said that the layoffs at Cruise include staff at an engineering team in Pasadena, California, that works on Lidar. Lidar is a sensor technology that uses pulsed laser lights to sense the objects, similar to the way radar uses radio waves. Lidar start-ups had mushroomed when self-driving car tech drew billions of dollars in investments. The cuts at Cruise echo pain felt elsewhere in the industry. 



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