Self-drive car rental venture Zoomcar has closed an interim round of funding from existing investors, estimated at about Rs 31 crore ($5 million), as the company redraws strategy following the exit of cofounder David Back. Existing investors Empire Angels, FundersClub and Basset Investment Group, and funds advised by Triangle Growth Partners, who had backed the company in 2013, had also participated.
David Back and Greg Moran launched ZoomCar in February 2013 in Bangalore, India. Back and Moran both dropped out from their college to move to India and pursue Zoom.
Zoomcar was launched by David Back, a Harvard law graduate along with another American entrepreneur Greg Moran with the aim of becoming the ‘Zipcar’ of India. Following the exit of David Back he will continue to hold his board position of the US entity of the Bengaluru-based company, in which sources say he owns 24%.
In October last year, the company received $8 million (about Rs 50 crore) in funding led by Sequoia Capital.
Bangalore-based Zoomcar, backed by Sequoia Capital and a roster of marquee angel investors such as Lady Barbara Judge and former Infosys director Mohandas Pai, has so far raised over $11 million in venture funding. Zoomcar was a member of Microsoft’s Accelerator Plus program in Bangalore.
Currently with 1100 self-driven cars, Zoomcar offers services across Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune and the Delhi-NCR region.
Notably, Zoom has partnered with the auto manufacturers like Ford & Mahindra in Indis which allowed them to become the first car rental company in India to offer an electric vehicle (the Mahindra REVA E2O by Mahindra) and the Ford EcoSport “urban SUV by Ford” in 2013. Zoom also works with locally established real estate developers, universities, hotels, and corporate IT parks to secure parking for its vehicles and offer pick-up points to its members.
The self-drive car industry is currently rapidly expanding in India, with Carzonrent entering the space and mobility provider Formula Group having announced its self-drive offering earlier this month.