We earlier covered Uber’s plan to launch in India and the company has just announced its open ‘secret’ Bangalore launch.
Uber, like any other launch wants to go slow with the rollout.
“Whether it’s getting to your favorite pub for happy hour or the iconic MTR for filter coffee, the endless one-ways and the incessant symphony of car horns can make even the most staunch local residents lose their minds. Bangaloreans deserve an easy and classy way to get around town, and Uber is here to deliver.” [source]
The company recently launched its Dubai and China operations. The San Francisco, California based Uber has raised $300 million from investors and is considered one of the hottest startups in the US. The company is backed by Menlo Ventures, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and Goldman Sachs. Uber offers its services in major cities of the US, in London and Paris.
Over the next several weeks, Uber will be in “secret testing mode” in Bangalore; availability will be limited as we work to make more cars available and test our pricing.
Taxi Regulations in India
Transport regulations in India can be very complicated. For instance, a vehicle hired from one locality may not be allowed to enter another locality in places close to Delhi and Mumbai. Moreover, taxi charges are regulated by the government and taxi driver unions.
For foreign owners, this could be further complicated. Take for instance when Zoom wanted to launch in Bangalore, they ran into the 1989 Rent-a-Cab scheme which dictates that you need to have permits to run such services. This is usually solved with the help of a local partner. In Zoom’s case– Ramesh Tours and Travels. Zoom has two American co-founders, Greg Moran and David Back.
Recommended Read : Why Autowale Pulled Out of Bangalore
Online Cab Booking: Funding Roundup
– Olacabs reportedly raised $3.2mn from Tiger (raised Series A from Tiger earlier)
– BookMyCab raised funding from YourNest Angels Fund and Mumbai Angels.
– Self drive car rental firm Zoomcar raised nearly $250,000 from angel investors.
What’s NextBigWhat in this space? Expect consolidation, as most of the players have regional expertise and a company with huge war-chest will just go ahead and acquire one of these services.