Waymo opens subsidiary in China

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FILE PHOTO: Waymo unveils a self-driving Chrysler Pacifica minivan during the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Michigan, U.S., January 8, 2017. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

Waymo, the former Google self-driving project that spun out to become a business under Alphabet, has opened a subsidiary in China.

The unit, called Huimo Business Consulting Co., opened in Shanghai on May 22, according to a filing with China’s National Enterprise Credit Information Publicity System. China Money Network was the first to report on the new entity. The unit, which was set up with 3.5 million yuan ($511,000), lists Waymo as an investor.

A Waymo spokesperson confirmed Thursday to TechCrunch that the unit had been formed in Shanghai and that people are working there. The company declined to comment further on its plans in China.

Don’t expect Waymo to launch an autonomous ride-hailing service in China, or even to test there.The filing says the subsidiary will be focused on logistics consulting, supply chain, and autonomous driving parts and product design.

An unnamed source familiar with the company’s plans backed up the description in the filing and told TechCrunch that the subsidiary will be working on building out a supplier network not launching a service there.

Source: TechCrunch

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