Ola has been on a roll.
India’s very own ride hailing company started the year on a high, securing a
funding of $ 100 million from Sachin Bansal (The co-founder of Flipkart and one
of India’s foremost tech entrepreneurs.) Earlier this month, Ola made headlines
yet again – by raising
$ 11 million in total, from investors like Jabbar Internet
Group, a tech investment firm based in Dubai, DIG investment Ab based in Sweden
and Deshe Holdings based in the U.S.
If you look into Ola’s
recent investment history, with investors such as SoftBank Group Corp, Tiger
Global and Matrix Partners and Tata Sons raising their stake in the online
transportation giant, it’s obvious Ola has been busy trying to diversify its
But that’s not all, Ola
also plans to introduce 1 million EVs (electric vehicles) in India by 2021,
just became the toughest competitor to UBER in London and looks to have set its
sight on the whole world.
But is Ola really ready
to take over global transportation scene? Let’s find out!
brief history of Ola
The Ola app is an
excellent example of a top-notch on
demand mobile app that incorporates both visual
aesthetics and functional efficacy. It offers the users the convenience to hail
rides at their current location, pay online using various popular payment
options and rate their ride experience. Today, Ola is estimated to be worth
about $6.2 billion. But the company’s origins were pretty humble.
Ola was founded in December 2010 and
only operated within the city of Mumbai.
In March 2014, Ola acquired TaxiForSure,
a transportation company based in Bangaluru for an estimated $200 million.
In November 2014, Ola launched Ola Auto
– budget friendly auto rickshaw rides. By the end of the year, Ola auto was
running successfully in all the major cities in India, including Chennai,
Delhi, Hyderabad and Pune.
In 2017, Ola acquired Food panda, an
Indian food delivery company and further diversified its services.
In 2018, Ola financed Vogo, a scooter
renting startup, continuing its expansion into newer markets.
By the end of 2018, Ola was running its
operations across 169 cities in India, with approximately 1,000,000 vehicles under its wing.
If you look closely at the past, it can give you a clear idea
of the future. Ola’s past shows a determined march into uncharted markets and a
trend of succeeding in the majority of its undertakings. With that track
record, it’s easy to feel positive about Ola’s international success.
Ola’s foray into international waters
According to Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority of Singapore,
Ola has spent about $60 million on international operations during the past 15 months. And by the end of the
current financial year, Ola’s international business is expected to make up
more than a third of its total revenue.
Ola’s approach so has been both well planned and well executed.
If you look at the user base and geographical aspects of cities like
Auckland, Cardiff, Perth and Sydney, you’ll find they’re about the same size as
major Indian cities where Ola has been operating successfully for years. By
entering cities like London where Uber has been struggling due to regulatory
issues, Ola is making the most of every opportunity open to it.
Presently, Ola is operational in 20 cities outside India, including 3
cities in New Zealand, 7 cities in the United Kingdom and 9 cities in
Australia. If the company continues its careful approach in selecting new
markets, international growth and success seem inevitable!
Ola’s push into international market isn’t fueled by
ambition alone. Ola has already found the formula for generating greater
revenue with lesser expenditure in India. Moves like reducing driver
incentives, increasing fares where and when possible and launching subscription
and values added services on Ola app have been significant contributors to
to move strategically into international locations where existing
transportation services are either struggling or aren’t on top of their game
can give Ola a big advantage if they can keep trimming their losses and earning
higher revenue. Since a
major part of Ola’s operations – from tech to call centers are based in India
where the cost of running is more economical than in most other countries, Ola
finds itself in a highly advantageous position.
India’s homegrown on-demand ride hailing company is poised to already
challenging the biggest international players in a big way. With the brains
behind the operations planning every move with utmost care, we can expect Ola
to emerge as one of the biggest names in international transportation in the
next couple years.
Interested in developing an Ola like app for your very own startup?
Reach out to us at Apptunix.com.
Nikhil Bansal is the CEO and Founder of Apptunix, a leading web and mobile app development company helping businesses in streamlining their processes with powerful and intuitive mobile apps. With extensive experience in iOS app development, he has established himself as a highly-focused Solution Architect and UX expert, the one who is always ready to make efforts in the direction where technology blends with lives.