Few days backs rumor mills was buzzing with the report that intra-city and inter-city bus providers Zipgo is in talks with Essel Group for fresh fundraising round. On Wednesday Zipgo laid all these rumors to rest, after officially announcing that it has raised nearly $29.14 Mn or Rs 200 crore. The fundraising round was led by Essel Green Mobility (EGM), infrastructure arm of the Essel Group.
Zipgo’s fundraising has come closely on the heels of its rival Shuttl’s fundraising round. With two dominant players receiving huge funds from big VC firms, the online bus aggregator space is suddenly buzzing with lot of activities.
Investor’s sudden interest in bus shuttle & online bus aggregation space has baffled quite a few analysts. This is primarily because the online bus aggregation space is heavily hampered by excessive government rules and regulations.
It was probably owing to regulatory issues that Ola earlier this year was forced to shut down its bus shuttle services across several cities. In fact, even Zipgo had to pull down services in quite a few cities owing to tough regulatory issues.
So have Essel Group & Amazon invested in Zipgo and Shuttl with the hope that regulatory issues will improve with passage of time? In all possibility, the answer is resounding ‘yes.’ This hope emanates from the fact that even today millions of Indians travel by bus and hence a friendly regulatory policy will only help players like Zipgo and Shuttl in resolving the commuter problem faced by millions of Indians every day.
Meanwhile, Zipgo has big plans following the latest fundraising round
With every fundraising rounds comes big plans and Zipgo is no exception. The New Delhi based online bus aggregator plans to use big chunk of the latest fund infusion for making 100% transition to electric fleet. This in line with EGM’s grand vision to help India to steer towards green revolution.
Zipgo also plans to go big on expansion mode, with company is seriously aiming to expand beyond tier 1 and Tier 2 cities. The company now wants to start operations in smaller cities like Udaipur, Indore, Bhubaneswar, Mangalore, Tirupati, and Visakhapatnam.
There are also reports that the company may raise $14.56 Mn (INR 100 Cr) to start electric rickshaws across several states in coming months.