Waymo, Uber end trade secrets theft trial with settlement

Waymo unveils a self-driving Chrysler Pacifica minivan during the North American International Auto Show in Detroit Michigan US

The payout is a 0.34 percent value stake in Uber to Waymo which adds up to around $245 million, as reported by CNBC.

Waymo accused Uber of stealing key technologies for the development of autonomous vehicles. Additionally, Uber will pay Waymo $245 million in equity. He also says Uber is making sure its self-driving vehicle research represents only Uber's work, though he expressed "regret" for his company's actions.

To be clear, while we do not believe that any trade secrets made their way from Waymo to Uber, nor do we believe that Uber has used any of Waymo's proprietary information in its self-driving technology, we are taking steps with Waymo to ensure our Lidar and software represents just our good work.

Lidar is a light-based sensor crucial to autonomous driving.

"We hired Anthony because we felt that he was incredibly visionary, a very good technologist, and he was also very charming", Kalanick said, noting that the goal was to "make driverless cars a reality".

"Knowing everything we know, Uber regrets ever bringing Anthony Levandowski on board", Uber lawyer William Carmody told the jury in his opening statement.

"Their risks would have gone up on many levels", Ms. Rowe said.

Going to trial, Waymo seemed to have had the advantage since a U.S. judge last May ordered Anthony Levandowski, the former Waymo employee at the center of the case, to return to his former employer the confidential files that he would have taken away when leaving the company. Mr. Levandowski has never publicly addressed the allegations of taking the documents and law enforcement has not charged anyone with their theft.

Levandowski may have been called to the stand Friday, where he was expected to invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, a possibility that may have significantly blemished Uber's case, some observers noted.

Public accusations of sexual harassment and a toxic workplace prompted an internal investigation at Uber that resulted in more than 20 people being fired, and the company faces multiple federal criminal probes.

"To our friends at Alphabet: we are partners, you are an important investor in Uber, and we share a deep belief in the power of technology to change people's lives for the better", Khosrowshahi said in the statement. Although it has acquired the necessary California permit, it still does not have self-driving cars transporting passengers there.

The Google subsidiary claims that the group and its boss had engineered everything and bought Otto knowing that Mr. Levandowski would have stolen technology secrets from Waymo.

Stock in the privately held Uber would be transferred immediately to Alphabet, which was an early Uber investor and remains as one of its largest shareholders.

Autonomous cars offer a multi-billion-dollar opportunity to remake transportation, and companies including Apple Inc (O:), General Motors Co (N:), Ford Motor Co (N:), Volkswagen AG (DE:) and scores of startups are competing to develop the technology.

Waymo said in a statement that the agreement will protect its intellectual property. Waymo could have filed additional claims against Uber in the months and years ahead, but that's no longer a possibility unless Waymo finds additional evidence of Uber using its technology.

The terms of the compromise, which comes less than a week after the start of the trial, which saw Travis Kalanick, the founder and former boss of Uber, testify at the bar, were not disclosed.



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