Microsoft-backed self-driving startup Wayve expands to Vancouver

British autonomous-driving startup Wayve Technologies Ltd. is opening a research center in Vancouver, adding its second location in North America to accelerate its growth.

The company’s chief scientist Jamie Shotton, who previously helped to develop Microsoft Corp.’s body-tracking tool Kinect, will move from the U.K. to lead the R&D-focused office, Wayve’s third location after London and Mountain View, California.

“We are in a growth phase,” Shotton said in an interview. “It’s just about expanding our reach, expanding our access to talent.”

Going up against the likes of Alphabet Inc.’s Waymo, Wayve’s artificial intelligence aims to learn driving rules and patterns by itself, rather than needing them to be programmed in, so it can intuit how to respond to new places and unpredictable scenarios.

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