Ford leads investors in Indian car rental giant Zoomcar

Zoomcar has closed US$24 million in a Series B investment round led by Ford Smart Mobility, a subsidiary of Ford Motor Company.

Existing investors Sequoia Capital, Nokia Growth Partners and Empire Angels also participated.

The funds will be used primarily to accelerate its marketplace model, along with furthering its technological lead.

Zoomcar aims to reach a fleet size of over 25,000 across 25-plus cities by 2018.

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It will also significantly expand its current airport offering across all cities.

Early this year, the Bangalore-headquartered firm launched Zoomcar Associate Program whereby individuals can purchase vehicles on behalf of Zoomcar, list the vehicle on a dynamic basis on its platform, and then finally share the profit on a monthly basis.

“Ford was our very first original equipment maker partner back in 2013 and this announcement just cements the fact that the two companies share many of the same core values and vision related to urban mobility.

“Customer experience will remain our highest priority as we scale ZAP across India in the months ahead and our relationship with Ford will no doubt help us create a world leading marketplace experience for both our customers and associates,” said Greg Moran, chief executive, Zoomcar.

Zoomcar was founded in 2013 by Greg Moran and David Back.

It is a self-drive car rental company that allows users to rent cars by the hour, day, week or month.

Zoomcar offers a wide variety of cars for self-drive, ranging from hatchbacks to SUVs to luxury vehicles.

Its fleet, which is currently clocking nearly 2,000 cars, includes Ford Figo and Ecosport.

The services are currently available in Bangalore, Pune, Chandigarh, Chennai, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Delhi NCR.

Zoomcar claims to have doubled bookings in the past year with 75 per cent occupancy, 1.5 million app downloads, and users who have traveled over 120 million kilometres to over 50,000 destinations in the country.

In July last year, the firm raised US$11 million from Sequoia, Empire Angels and NGP.