Electric cab-hailing app BluSmart has raised around Rs 37 crore or $5 million in its pre-Series A round, said two sources aware of the development. This would be the second financing round for the Gurugram-based venture since September last year.
“Contours of the deal have already been finalised and if nothing goes wrong from here it will be announced soon. Most of the existing investors in the previous round have participated in the pre-Series A round,” said one of the sources on condition of anonymity.
BluSmart had raised an angel round of $3 million from JITO Angel Network, Mayfield, KA Enterprises, the investment office of Deepika Padukone, Kalpavriksh Trust and others in September last year. It had also raised an undisclosed amount in seed funding in July 2019.
“Mumbai Angels, Inflection Point Ventures and Lets Venture are the new investors on the table and the company was valued at around Rs 70 crore in the last round,” added the above-mentioned person. Entrackr couldn’t ascertain the valuation of BluSmart in this round.
The fresh funds will be used for marketing, running operations and leasing deposit for cars. The proceeds will also help BluSmart to streamline operations after a sharp fall in daily volume due to the Covid-19 lockdown. Even after relaxation in lockdown, the cab-hailing firms are able to fulfil a maximum of 20% of their occupancy.
According to a Financial Express report, the company has a fleet of 320 electric cars across NCR and Mumbai. Its fleet consists of Tata e-Tigor, Mahindra e-Verito and Hyundai Kona EV. So far, it has completed 1.75 lakh trips.
Sources outline that it did revenue of about Rs 3 crore in FY20. Responding to Entrackr’s queries, BluSmart said, “We would like to make no comments on any speculation.”
Unlike Ola and Uber, BluSmart has no-surge pricing and zero cancellation charges. Post lockdown, the firm has been trying to increase its occupancy with special offers for doctors, healthcare workers, power sector people, and banking sector employees.
BluSmart will compete with Ola Electric when the SoftBank-backed company will launch its services. Many experts believe that BluSmart doesn’t have a moat or advantage against deep-pocketed Ola and Uber.
While adoption of electric cabs will reduce carbon footprint, the number of such commuters isn’t large. BluSmart offers assured rides, unlike Ola and Uber where drivers can decline rides after accepting bookings, a key differentiator in the current market.