Ola raises $104 million in funds
Cab aggregator Ola has raised $104 million (Rs. 670 crore) in funding from Falcon Edge and Ratan Tata's RNT Capital Advisers. According to Ola's official filings with the Registrar of Companies, Falcon Edge contributed Rs. 402 crore, while RNT investments put in Rs. 267.9 crore. Ola's current value could not be ascertained but media reports pegged it at $3.5 billion in Feb'17.
Ola is an online cab booking service based out of Mumbai and one of the fastest growing cab hailing firms in India. It was founded on 3rd December 2010 by Ankit Bhati and Bhavish Aggarwal; the latter is also its current CEO. Ola provides customers with an array of cab options like Mini, Prime and Luxury and with different modes of payment.
On 21st April 2011, Ola received $3,30,000 in the initial round of funding. The company further amassed $5 million from Tiger Global Management in Series A funding. In Series B funding, Matrix Partners and Tiger Global invested another $20 million in the company. Steadview Capital and Sequoia Capital gave it $41.5 million in funds in July 2014.
In a $200 million deal, Ola acquired TaxiForSure in a cash and equity arrangement. This acquisition added at least 15,000 vehicles to Ola's already staggering fleet of 100,000 vehicles. After the merger, TaxiForSure and Ola continued to function as separate entities. This move was seen as giving tough competition to bigger players such as Meru Cabs and Uber.
Ola got $400 million in its Series E round of funding, led by DST Global along with GIC, Falcon Edge Capital and others. $100 million of this funding has been earmarked towards growth and expansion of its recently acquired TaxiForSure. This investment will help Ola expand deeper into smaller cities and in 200 cities by the end of 2015.
Marking his 10th investment in the year, Ratan Tata has now invested in the online taxi booking service Ola. Tata has taken stakes in his individual capacity and the nitty gritty of the deal has not yet been disclosed. Ola was thrilled to be associated with Tata, whose mentorship and validation has made a name of its own in the business world.
Ola has raised $500 million in funding and is now valued at $5 billion. Ola said that it had sealed its Series F funding round with investment from Didi Kuaidi, China's largest cab service and existing Tiger Global, SoftBank and DST Global as well. Ola declared a 30-fold growth in the past year with almost a million booking requests every day.
India's Ola is gearing up to raise funds at a critically reduced valuation of approximately $3 billion. Accepting investments at a lowered valuation known as down-round is carried out by companies which need urgent funds to support operation. Down round can lower the morale of previous investors. Ola will be the first unicorn to do so at 40% lower valuation than present $5 billion.
Ola has raised Rs. 1,675cr in fresh funding from Japanese telecom giant SoftBank Corp in its down round, which was closed last December. Ola, which commands 65% of the market share vs Uber, is reportedly raising another $100mn from Ratan Tata's RNT Capital and Falcon Edge, which could push up its valuation to $3.5bn. Plans to introduce electric vehicles will likely boost its prospects.
According to RedSeer Management Consulting, Ola reported a four-fold increase in the number of rides in 2016 as compared to the previous year. The company witnessed 6mn rides per week on an average during September-December 2016. Its major sources of revenue are Micro and Mini.