Ola raises $36 million from hedge fund Tekne Private Ventures

Ola

Cab-hailing major Ola has raised $36 million (Rs 231 crore) from Tekne Private Ventures through the issue of preference shares. The SoftBank-funded company had allotted 171,173 fully and compulsorily convertible preference shares for a total consideration of Rs 231.44 crore, as per RoC filings by ANI Technologies.

The company has allocated about 1.23 lakh shares to Tekne Private Ventures III LP for Rs 167.15 crore while 47,548 shares worth Rs 64.28 crore were issued to Tekne Private Ventures I Master from Cayman Islands.

This is the second round of funding by Tekne Private Ventures into the SoftBank-funded company. Earlier in June, US-based hedge fund pumped in $50 million (approx Rs 322 crore). Ratan Tata’s venture fund RNT Capital Advisors and US hedge fund Falcon Edge also participated in the round.

Ola continues to raise investment to tackle cash-rich arch-rival Uber. The Bengaluru-based company was also in talks to receive $50-100 million (Rs320-640 crore) from Microsoft for a small stake. If the deal goes through, Ola will likely to switch to Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform from Amazon Web Services (AWS).

Besides Microsoft, Ola also reported to having talks with Chinese internet conglomerate Tencent to raise $400 million.

Importantly, this is the fourth round of funding in the cab-hailing company this year. Since January, Ola has raised around $436 million from SoftBank, Falcon Edge Capital and Tekne Capital, taking the total funding to over $2.4 billion.

Recently, Ola announced to ramp up of expansion of its content platform Ola Play and is pushing electric vehicles in its fleet, which will be the two major differentiators from its rival Uber.

Since early this year, Ola and Uber both have cut-down driver’s incentive to minimises losses. Consequently, both companies had witnessed a 25 per cent drop in the number of cars listed on their platforms.

According to a report by Redseer Management Consulting, on-demand cab industry, which had always reflected positive growth, recorded a negative growth in the first quarter of 2017, owing to the shortage of cabs.

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