What happened

Shares of Collective Growth (NASDAQ:CGRO) moved up today after news from Friday that it is merging with a lidar sensor company. After jumping almost 10% Monday morning, the stock has settled to a gain of 2.5% at 11:30 a.m. EST.

So what 

The company is merging with Innoviz Technologies in a move that will allow Innoviz to trade on the Nasdaq stock exchange under the new symbol INVZ. The announcement officially confirmed a prior rumor about the combination.

lidar image of traffic intersection

Innoviz lidar image of traffic intersection. Image source: Innoviz Technologies.

Innoviz makes lidar sensor systems used in automotive applications including autonomous vehicles, as well as other uses in drones and logistics. In addition to the hardware, it soon will also offer perception software that provides additional data to the vehicles. 

Now what

Innoviz's systems are designed for automotive, shuttle, delivery, and robotaxi makers of Level 3 to Level 5 autonomous vehicles -- a range from conditional to full automation. Customers include BMW as well as makers of heavy equipment used in agriculture, construction, and mining. 

The merger bringing Innoviz public is expected to close in the first quarter of 2021, and will value the combined company at $1.4 billion. "Collective Growth sought to advance industrial practices and drive the evolution of the auto sector," Collective Growth chairman and CEO Bruce Linton said in a statement. 

Prior to founding Collective Growth, Linton was the founder and CEO of cannabis company Canopy Growth

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.