UPS Takes Minority Stake in Autonomous Truck Startup

United Parcel Service Inc. is taking a minority stake in self-driving truck company TuSimple and conducting test runs with the startup.

The undisclosed investment is part of an effort to understand what it would take to produce a fully autonomous truck, said Todd Lewis, who runs UPS Ventures. Developing a computer-driven truck requires advances in areas such as assisted braking and lane-change warnings that also could be used in traditional vehicles, he said.

That desire to invest in technologies that serve current needs reflects a change at UPS Ventures, which was formed in 1997 as the Strategic Enterprise Fund. The $150 million fund was renamed and revamped when Scott Price, a former Walmart Inc. executive, was hired in December 2018 as the courier’s chief transformation officer.