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Why Ford Stock Just Put its Pedal to the Metal

By Rich Smith - Feb 1, 2021 at 12:51PM

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Ford will go all in with Google software.

What happened

Shares of automotive giant Ford Motor Company (F -2.72%) are on fire Monday morning, rising 6.6% through 11:50 a.m. on the back of an announced partnership with Alphabet (GOOG -1.29%) (GOOGL -1.34%) subsidiary Google.

So what

In what it calls a "first-of-its-kind partnership to create unique services and capabilities for Ford and Lincoln customers, and to accelerate Ford's transformation plan," Ford will partner with Google to integrate Android software, Google apps, and Google services into its cars -- and use Google Cloud as its "preferred cloud provider."  

Ford and Google call their new partnership Team Upshift -- but it's not 100% clear what the team will be teaming up on. Google says it will "help Ford leverage Google Cloud's AI, ML and data analytics technologies to accelerate the automaker's digital transformation, modernize operations, and power connected vehicle technologies." Ford cars will apparently also integrate Google Maps and Google Assistant voice command technology, and Google Play will be employed to play "music, podcasts, audiobooks and more."

Ford also suggests the partnership "may include projects ranging from developing new retail experiences when buying a vehicle, creating new ownership offers based on data, and more."

Futuristic digital car dashboard with a finger poised to tap Self-Driving icon

Image source: Getty Images.

Now what

While details are sparse at this point, the companies still have some time to figure things out. Team Upshift will go into effect only in 2023, although the relationship is expected to continue for at least six years after that date.

Alphabet stock, by the way, is moving up on this news, too -- but less than 3%. That's not surprising, though. When you consider that Alphabet earned $35.7 billion over the past year, while Ford lost $163 million, Ford clearly has more to gain from its "digital transformation" than does Alphabet.

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Stocks Mentioned

Ford Motor Company Stock Quote
Ford Motor Company
$12.50 (-2.72%) $0.35
Alphabet Inc. Stock Quote
Alphabet Inc.
$2,178.16 (-1.34%) $-29.52
Alphabet Inc. Stock Quote
Alphabet Inc.
$2,186.26 (-1.29%) $-28.65

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