Exclusive: US based Car Hire Company Uber to launch in India Soon, Bangalore First
Update: Uber has launched in India!
It appears that Uber, the technology based cab hire company based in the United States is launching in India. The company, which makes technology to make it easy for people to hire cabs, has posted three job listings for roles in Bangalore.
Uber is looking to hire a community manager, a general manager and an operations & logistics manager in the city (see below). The San Fransisco, California based Uber has raised nearly $50 million from investors and is considered one of the hottest startups in the US. The company is backed by Menlo Ventures, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and Goldman Sachs. Uber offers its services in major cities of the US, in London and Paris.
In May, Uber’s CEO Travis Kalanick had denied reports that the company was looking to raise more capital at a $1 billion valuation.
Uber had run into trouble with regulators in the US who were of the view that the company must seek permission from transport regulators before operating in a city. The transport segment, especially the taxi cabs, are regulated in similar ways in India.
Taxi Regulations in India
Transport regulations in India can be very complicated. For instance, a vehicle hired from one locality may not be allowed to enter another locality in places close to Delhi and Mumbai. Moreover, taxi charges are regulated by the government and taxi driver unions.
For foreign owners, this could be further complicated. Take for instance when Zoom wanted to launch in Bangalore, they ran into the 1989 Rent-a-Cab scheme which dictates that you need to have permits to run such services. This is usually solved with the help of a local partner. In Zoom’s case– Ramesh Tours and Travels. Zoom has two American co-founders, Greg Moran and David Back.
Over the past two years, the cab rental space has seen debut of players like OlaCabs, TaxiForSure and TaxiGuide amongst others. Bangalore based Cabs24x7 is one of newest to enter the space.
Online Cab Booking: A Quick Funding Roundup
As venture capitalists moved on from e-commerce last year, the cab rental industry seems to have caught their fancy. Investors have been courting some serious business opportunity in the largely unorganised $6-billion domestic cab market, growing at 25-30% year on year.
Mumbai based Olacabs, founded in 2011 raised Series A funding of more than $3 million from Tiger Global last year.
Two months ago, Sharedcab raised angel investment under a million dollars from prominent investors such as Anupam Mittal, Sasha Mirchandani (Kae Capital), Blume Ventures and few others. TaxiForSure had raised venture capital funding from Accel Partners, Helion Venture Partners and Blume Ventures. Call Taxi Service, Bookmycab secured funding from YourNest Angel Fund and Mumbai Angels six months ago.
Most recently, self drive car rental firm Zoomcar raised nearly $250,000 from angel investors.