(Yicai Global) Jan. 24 -- The new energy vehicle unit of Chinese financial conglomerate Baoneng Group Ltd. will bring in the outgoing Baidu Inc. vice-president responsible for the development of its autonomous driving platform Apollo, to head up its research and development team.
Wu Xuebin will join the Shenzhen-based firm under the leadership of billionaire chairman Yao Zhenhua, online media outlet The Paper reported on Jan. 23.
After joining Baidu as vice-president in September 2016, Wu, was in charge of research and development at its automatic driving department. He brought years of industry experience, having worked overseas for globally-renowned auto giants like General Motors Co., Robert Bosch GmbH and Ford Motor Co.
He was expected to continue to work with Baidu as a promotional ambassador, online media outlet QQ News reported.
Baoneng Auto, set up in October last year, aims to establish itself as a major NEV maker in the domestic market. It is building two industrial parks in Guangzhou and Hangzhou through a total investment of CNY44 billion (USD6.6 billion).
A number of intelligent driving personnel have left Baidu over the last few years to start their own businesses related to the field. At least 13 new autonomous driving start-ups have emerged through the efforts of former Baidu employees so far.