Shares of Ford Motor Co. rallied 1.4% in premarket trading Friday, after Germany-based automaker Volkswagen AG confirmed that it will invest $2.6 billion in Ford’s self-driving services (SDS) partner Argo AI, as part of an expansion of the company’s alliance to include electric vehicles. As part of the deal, Volkswagen will commit $1 billion in funding and contribute its $1.6 billion Autonomous Intelligent Driving (AID) company. Volkswagen will also buy $500 million worth of Argo AI shares from Ford over three years. That will give Ford and Volkswagen an equal stake in Argo AI, and will give the companies, combined, a substantial majority ownership in Argo AI, which is valued at more than $7 billion. “While Ford and Volkswagen remain independent and fiercely competitive in the marketplace, teaming up and working with Argo AI on this important technology allows us to deliver unmatched capability, scale and geographic reach,” said Ford Chief Executive Jim Hackett. Ford’s stock has run up 33% year to date through Thursday, while Volkswagen’s U.S.-listed shares have gained 9% and the S&P 500 has climbed 20%.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
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