Scooter-sharing start-up Bounce plans expansion, eyes global foray

Topics Bounce

Bounce, a motorycle and scooter sharing start-up, which recently raised $105 million (Rs 750 crore), plans to expand in this country and also get into markets abroad. 

“We have been successful in proving this is a solution that appeals to a very large population. Our efforts would be to scale up to 10-12 major cities and 100 smaller cities in the coming few quarters,” said Anil G, chief operating officer and co-founder. “We believe (tapping) smaller cities is a big opportunity, as they don’t have all the (transportation) facilities like in big cities.”

It is now in Bengaluru and Hyderabad, besides six smaller cities, including Mangaluru and Vijayawada. It now aims to enter Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan and the NCR.

“We believe this kind of a solution can be deployed in multiple geographies. Though our main focus remains on India, we are definitely looking at cities outside of India as well where we see the potential for this kind of solution to exist, like in Europe and Southeast Asia,” said Anil. The $105 million was from a Series-D funding led by Accel, a leading venture capital entity, and B Capital Group, a global technology fund. Existing investors Accel Partners India, Chiratae Ventures, Falcon Edge, Maverick Ventures, Omidyar Network India, 

Qualcomm Ventures and Sequoia Capital India also participated.

The investment more than doubles the company’s valuation, to over $500 million, from its previous funding round last June when the estimate was $220 million, according to sources. 

The new funding, which takes the total raised to $194 million, will fuel a deeper electric vehicle (EV) integration and help drive profitability, said the company.  Accelerating the adoption of EVs will push sustainable mobility and reduce the cost per km. 
Another aim is to make its offerings form-agnostic or to tailor its mobility solution to the city or town it gets into. Besides multi-city expansion, the funds will also help access to technology more of skilled people. “The main vision of Bounce is to democratise mobility. 

This fresh funding will help us,” said Vivekananda H R, chief executive and co-founder. 

Founded in 2014, the start-up’s app allows users to take a vehicle and leave it at an approved parking spot. Bounce currently operates its dockless scooters in Bengaluru and Hyderabad, with 13,000 and 2,000 vehicles, respectively. It’s docked scooter rental service is available to commuters in 35 cities, it said, with a little more than 120,000 daily rides, making it one of the fastest-growing in shared mobility entities in the world. Each vehicle is said to do at least nine rides a day. 

“The innovations around the keyless mechanism of using a scooter, coupled with other IoT (Internet of Things) modifications, make Bounce unique,” said Anand Daniel, partner at Accel.

The company said the biggest impact it is creating is enabling the usage of MRT (mass rapid transit), with 42 per cent of its rides starting or ending at a public transport hub. “Bounce achieved over 16 million rides in 2019 and has the potential to reach over 200 million customers across the country, with a highly engaged community of riders,” said Kabir Narang, co-head of Asia at B Capital Group. 

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