From "Apple Slowly Assembling Approach to Autonomy," a note to Loup Ventures subscribers posted Wednesday:
Drive.ai, which has been seeking a buyer for months and recently laid off 90 engineers, was valued at over $200M in its most recent round of funding. We believe the acquisition price will be less than $35M.
Apple continues to strategically acquire frontier tech companies. The company has the culture and the balance sheet to think and invest for the long-term, so they are able to advantageously acquire companies that cannot do the same but have talent, IP, and expertise that is valuable.
The acquisition also points to the broader trend of consolidation that we're seeing among self-driving startups. This is evidenced by Drive.ai, once considered among the industry's leaders, selling at a discount...
While Apple's autonomy project is still five-plus years away from generating any revenue, we think the size of the opportunity and Apple's careful positioning are being underappreciated by investors.
My take: Investors have a hard time planning one year ahead, never mind five.