Uber and Waymo reach reported $245 million settlement

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That same source noted that had this settlement been a jury verdict, would have been fourth highest jury verdict for trade secret misappropriation reported in the last decade in United States.

All the same, Levandowski was sacked from Uber a year ago, for what the company said was failure to comply with the legal team involved in the lawsuit with Waymo. Convinced that Google was going its own way, Kalanick made a decision to start a self-driving vehicle division within Uber by hiring top engineers specializing in robotics from Carnegie-Mellon University in Pittsburgh in 2015. But the trial is now over.

Khosrowshahi also acknowledged that Alphabet is an "important investor" in Uber and that the two companies "share a deep belief in the power of technology to change people's lives for the better".

What remains unclear is whether the lawsuit or the verdict affects Uber's self-driving auto strategy. "The evidence at trial overwhelmingly proved that, and had the trial proceeded to its conclusion, it is clear Uber would have prevailed", the statement said.

For Uber, there were many reasons to settle the case, particularly as Khosrowshahi expects to take the company public in 2019. With an equity settlement, Google now owns more of Uber than it did before.

After Page repeatedly spurned meetings to discuss combining Uber's ride-hailing service with Google's work on self-driving vehicles in some sort of partnership, Kalanick said, his company started to develop its own autonomous auto technology.


The settlement allows Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi to put another scandal behind the company and move ahead with development of self-driving technology after the tumultuous leadership of the firm by former CEO Travis Kalanick, who testified at the trial on Tuesday and Wednesday.

According to a source familiar with the matter, Uber can not use any of Waymo's hardware or software trade secrets as one of the conditions of the settlement.

Khosrowshahi's statement says that his company will be "taking steps with Waymo that ensure that our LiDAR and software represents just our good work", suggesting some kind of tech monitoring arrangement.

Waymo said in its statement Friday that it was "committed to working with Uber (Google is an early investor in the ride-sharing company) to make sure that each company develops its own technology". Waymo accuses Levandowski of conspiring with Kalanick to steal its trade secrets.

While the technical details of Waymo's case were not revealed, it was widely believed to focus on Lidar, a laser-based system which is critical to enabling autonomous cars to get a three-dimensional picture of its surroundings. Waymo believes engineer Anthony Levandowski stole 14,000 files while he was an employee, and took them to his autonomous-driving startup, Otto, which was bought by Uber in 2016.

Waymo brought the suit in February 2017. Kalanick said, "I don't know, I don't remember". It's a term I use from time to time. No, sources say. Instead, both Google and Uber insiders offered the same cynical explanation: Google simply wanted to protect its underlying investment in Uber.

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