Uber’s major rival in India just raised $1.1 billion
While Uber faces five criminal investigations, its rival in India is ready to fight.
Ola, the six-year-old ride-hailing company that operates in over 100 cities throughout India, just raked in $1.1 billion from major investors. And another billion could be on the way.
Chinese internet giant Tencent led the funding round, which included participation from SoftBank, which has been on its own major investing spree as of late. Ola is in “advanced talks” with other investors to close an additional $1 billion as part of this funding round, pushing its raise over $2 billion, Ola said in a press release.
“We are thrilled to have Tencent Holdings join us as new partners in our mission to build mobility for a billion Indians,” Ola CEO Bhavish Aggarwal said in a statement. “The transportation and mobility industries are seeing huge changes globally. Our ambition is to build a globally competitive and futuristic transportation system in India that will support and accelerate a nation on the move.”
Ola plans to use this $1—and maybe $2—billion to invest in artificial intelligence and machine learning tailored to India’s mobility needs. The ride-hailing provider offers 14 separate categories of rides—like UberX versus Uber’s black cars—tailored to its market. Those include auto-rickshaws and bikes along with cars.
The company said it plans to go “deeper” into the Indian market—beyond the 110 cities of varying sizes where it operates now.
Uber only operates in about two dozen cities throughout India. And its competitor is determined to win.