Confidence of investors in shuttle services have bounced back in a big way. After Shuttl funding, ZipGo has raised about Rs 300 crore (approx $44 million) Series B round from Essel Infra, an infrastructure arm of the Essel group. This is the largest fundraising by any shuttle or bus marketplace in India.
The fundraise discussions were on between the two entities for the past several months, and finally finalised last week, said three sources aware of the deal.
“Essel Infra has been evaluating the deal since early March. While the preliminary discussion was for leading over Rs 150 crore (about $25 million) in the Bengaluru-based company, seeing greater synergy Essel Infra decided to put in Rs 300 crore.
Interestingly, ZipGo has been off from the media radar for the past couple of years. Although, it expanded to four new cities including Hyderabad, Jaipur, and Kolkata. The company offers intra as well as inter-city bus services to commuters.
“The deal signed by both Essel Infra and ZipGo last week and will be announced later this month,” reveal two of the three sources. The sources requested anonymity as the deal is still private and they aren’t authorised to speak to media.
Meanwhile, we have not been able to ascertain ZipGo’s valuation in the financing round.
Entrackr’s email sent to Zipgo and Essel Infra on late Friday for confirmation remain unanswered till the publication of this post. We will update the post as responses come in.
ZipGo operates in both B2B and B2C domains. For instance, it facilitates office commute to office goers in Bengaluru while it also serves as transport partners to large IT companies including Wipro. In Delhi (NCR) the company operates on a pure-play B2B model where it manages transport facility to corporates.
Floated by Jitender Sharma, Gaurav Agarwal, and Pritesh Gupta – ZipGo had raised $6 million Series A round in December 2016 from VentureEast and Omidyar Network. Previously, Rehan Yar Khan led Orios Venture put in $3 million seed capital in July 2015.
Lately, Essel Group has been displaying significant interest in consumer-facing transportation segment. Recently, it flagged off a handful of electric buses in UP (Lucknow-Kanpur and Agra-Delhi routes). The Subhash Chandra-led group is seeing sizeable opportunity in clean personal transportation segment.
Essel Group is also launching e-rickshaws initiatives with state governments such as UP, Uttarakhand, MP, and others.
According to sources, ZipGo would also begin offering intracity electric buses in the aforementioned cities. “It’s also likely to drive transportation ambitions of Essel Infra.
Last month, ZipGo’s rival Shuttl had raised $11 million worth Series B round led by Amazon India, Amazon Alexa Fund, and Dentsu Ventures.