AbhiBus To Raise $10 Million From PE Funds

Hyderabad-based online ticketing platform AbhiBus.com plans to raise $10 million from private equity (PE) players. The startup has appointed Kotak Investment Banking as advisor.

As per reports by Business Standard, Sudhakar Reddy Chirra, founder and chief executive officer, said this would be part of the company's plan to raise a total of $40 million over the next two years from PE funds and strategic investors.

"The $10 million will be the first tranche and we hope to close the deal in the next three or four months," said Chirra. He refused to name the PE funds involved.

Founded in 2007 by Sudhakar Reddy Chirra, with the goal of bringing the inventories of bus operators online, Abhibus.com provides end-to-end software and other value added solutions for the Bus Transport Industry. It has offices in Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad and Mumbai. With ticket inventory from over 1500 operators and 15000 routes, the company also provides technology solutions to more than 100 large private bus operators in India, 4 state transport corporations and 2 international operators.

The proposed fund raising plan is to support the company's geographical expansion and to build a brand. The company plans to enter Gujarat, Maharashtra, Delhi, and Uttar Pradesh markets and this would support its target of becoming a Rs 500-crore company by FY16. AbhiBus clocked Rs 160 crore in FY14, and has set a target to close the financial year with a revenue of Rs 250 crore in FY15.

If this deal got finalized for Abhibus, it will join the league of other online bus tickets booking companies that managed to attract investors. Abhibus face tough competition from other home-grown online ticketing players such as RedBus,TicketGoose and TravelYaari. In 2013, redBus was sold to Naspers for $100 million and last year, Ticketgoose raised Rs 24 crore in its second round of funding.

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