The Silicon Review
20 August, 2015
Bengaluru based self-driving car rental venture, Zoomcar has raised funds of $11 million from Empire Angels, Sequoia Capital, and NGP. The motive behind acquiring such huge capital is to expand its services across other Indian cities and also increase the number of vehicles.
Initially it started off with its operation in Bengaluru and now dispatches it services in cities such as Mumbai, Delhi, Pune, Chennai and Hyderabad.
At the moment the company claims to have 1, 500 operating in six cities. The demand for their service is so huge that in spite of investing in 1000 cars this year alone, they are unable to meet the explicit demand supply ratio. By the end of next year, the organization has planned to incorporate 7,000 more cars in the fleet and launch its services in 15 more cities.
“From the beginning of the year, our revenue has grown by more than 3x and bookings have increased in a similar fashion” said Greg Moran, Co-founder & CEO, Zoomcar.
Last year in October, the venture had raised $8 million of funding from Sequoia with participation from Mohandas Pai, former Infosys CFO, and Abhay Jain, Head of Corporate Affairs at Manipal Group, and many others. Empire Angels, Funders Club, Basset Investment Group, and funds advised by Triangle Growth Partners are other investors who had also increased their stakes in the round. Zoomcar had acquired $3M of funding from these companies.
This new venture was founded in 2013 with headquarters in Bangalore. Unlike other travel and cab services, Zoomcar allows any user to rent a car on hourly, daily, weekly and monthly basis and of course self-driving. It is the first self-driven rental cars’ company in India. It offers a wide range of choice in terms of vehicle catalogue; starting from hatchbacks to SUVs to luxury sedans.
Few of the car models that it currently possesses are Ford Figo, Honda City, Mahindra Reva, Scorpio, Tata Nano, Maruti Ciaz, BMW 3 Series, Mercedes A class, GLA, CLA and others. The rent starts from Rs.49/- on hourly basis for a basic nano to Rs. 250/- an hour for a CLA class.
The travel industry and car rental market has experienced a huge boom in the past few years making traveling easier for us. The main reason is the entry of international players in the market who see great opportunities in this sector in terms of both market value and growth. The quality of services has improved than what it was a few years back, and this has come about due to reliability, trained drivers, larger fleet size and monitored prices etc.
But things are not easy as it seems to survive in this industry. Everything looks sugar coated from outside, but the real challenge is to sustain and provide quality services taking it a step ahead of its competitors so as to maintain the brand name. Now a number of new startups are coming, be it in any domain.
Carzonrent’s self-drive service Myles and Selfdrive.In are other names that provide self-driven car facilities. Recently Myles has expanded its fleet size to 650 cars in 20 cities and plans are on the go to expand it to 50 cities and 1500 different locations in the next one year. Selfdrive.in which is operational in the west, i.e., Mumbai, Pune and Goa has almost doubled its fleet of 175 cars.
According to few research done, the reports say that the car rental market in India has huge scope of growth and will exceed Rs.800 billion by 2019-2020 due to increasing number of online booking through internet and mobile phone apps.
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