SoftBank and Toyota Motor agreed to create a joint venture for ride-sharing and self-driving car technologies. The new venture, Monet Technologies, will aim to launch mobility services using Toyota’s autonomous vehicles by the second half of the 2020s. The joint venture could operate, for example, a meal delivery service where the food is prepared inside a moving vehicle, the companies said. The two companies didn’t say how much they would invest in Monet in the future.
It is unclear how important Toyota will be for SoftBank, which has invested in global ride-hailing giants such as Uber and China’s Didi. Both SoftBank and Toyota are investors in Southeast Asian ride-hailing company Grab.
To further complicate the industry map, SoftBank’s Vision Fund invested in General Motors’ Cruise division earlier this year. This week, GM announced a partnership with Honda Motor, Toyota’s Japanese rival. Honda is taking a $750 million equity stake in Cruise.