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Aurora's Chris Urmson and Reinvent's Michael Thompson on why Self-Driving Technology is the Next Big Thing

Our latest podcast features Aurora, its self-driving technology, and merger with SPAC Reinvent Technology Partners Y (RTPY).

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In July, Reinvent Technology Partners Y (RTPY) announced a $10.6B EV SPAC transaction with self-driving technology company Aurora. We had Aurora CEO Chris Urmson as well as Reinvent CEO Michael Thompson join the podcast to discuss Aurora, the transaction, and why it's a compelling investment. 

See more about Aurora here.

See more about Reinvent here.

Aurora is planning on a late 2023 launch for its first product, the Aurora Driver for mass trucking, which boasts strong partnerships from the likes of Toyota and PACCAR. Listen to Chris and Michael discuss why Aurora's team is set for success, how Reinvent's alignment with shareholders should please investors, and why RTPY is setup to be a long-term winner. 

Reinvent Technology Partners Y (RTPY) / Aurora Details

Vote Date: November 2, 2021
Trust Size: $977.5M
EV: $10.6B
PIPE: $1B:  Baillie Gifford, Counterpoint Global, T. Rowe Price, PRIMECAP, Reinvent Capital, XN, Fidelity Management and Research, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Index Ventures, and Sequoia Capital, as well as strategic investments from Uber, PACCAR, and Volvo Group

Topics Discussed

  • Overview of Aurora and its technology, partnerships
  • Why public now vs. an additional private round
  • Why Reinvent, process of finding a SPAC
  • Sponsor alignment with public shareholders
  • Keys to success as a public company
  • 2023 Truck launch and go-to-market strategy
  • Why Aurora vs. a GM or Waymo?
  • Valuation in context vs. Peers and latest raise?
  • Telling Aurora’s story to the public
  • Capital structure of the company post close
  • Reinvent as a SPAC sponsor - picking SPAC targets
  • Future of the SPAC market from a sponsor perspective
  • Biggest Risk for Aurora

Reinvent SPAC History


About Chris Urmson

Mr. Urmson was a co-founder of Aurora and has served as Chief Executive Officer and a member of the board of directors at Aurora since its formation in 2017. Prior to founding Aurora, Mr. Urmson helped build Google’s self-driving program from 2009 to 2016 and served as Chief Technology Officer of the group. Mr. Urmson has over 15 years of experience leading automated vehicle programs.

About Michael Thompson

Michael Thompson has served as RTPY’s Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer since October 2020 and has served as one of our directors since March 2021. He also is a member of Reinvent Capital. Mr. Thompson was previously Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer and Director of each of RTP and RTPZ before such entities completed their respective initial business combinations. Mr. Thompson currently serves as Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer of RTPX. Mr. Thompson was previously managing member, and portfolio manager for BHR Capital, which managed as much as $1.9 billion of special situations funds from 2009-2016.

Aurora Management Team


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