Will Meru be second-time lucky in fight with Ola, Uber?

Ola Raises $1.1 Billion From Tencent Soft Bank as It Continues Fight With Uber

Ola announced Wednesday that it had raised $1.1 billion in its latest funding round, led by Chinese internet giant Tencent, along with Japan's SoftBank and new US -based investors.

India's ridesharing leader Ola announced today it has raised $1.1 billion in a round led by Tencent and SoftBank as the company seeks to put more distance between itself and Silicon Valley's Uber.

The money raised in this new funding round will give Ola a post-money valuation of over $4 billion.

The Bangalore-based ride-hailing company said it is also in "advanced talks with other investors" to raise an additional $1 billion - taking the overall investment to more than $2 billion. The transportation and mobility industries are seeing huge changes globally.

Uber, valued at about $69 billion, has pumped millions of dollars into India but has not been able to grow its presence at the same speed as Ola.


"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.

Tencent President Martin Lau said as Ola's offerings were tailored to meet the country's transportation needs, the partnership would enable his firm to be part of the growing ride-hailing space. The company said it would make significant technology investments into artificial intelligence and machine-learning capabilities to solve India's unique mobility problems. "We look forward to helping Ola further develop India's transportation solutions".

Ola and Uber now are locked in a dispute over who controls how much of the market. Tencent, for example, has invested in similar start-ups to Ola such as Indonesian ride-hailing app Go-Jek.

The antitrust cases in India, nevertheless, are set to further intensify the showdown between ride-hailing firms and local players in India's $12 billion taxi market.

It has managed to consistently maintain its lead over Uber with unique offerings that cater to the entire gamut of customer needs from Ola Auto-rickshaws, already available in 73 cities, Ola Bikes available in 13 cities to Ola Outstation, Ola Rentals, Ola Shuttle, Ola Share as well as the sedans equipped with the connected vehicle entertainment platform - Ola Play.

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