Exclusive: Scooter sharing firm Bounce to raise $10 mn in fresh funding
Bengaluru-based Wickedride Adventure Services Pvt. Ltd, which operates dockless scooter and bicycle sharing platform Bounce, is raising a little over $10 million (Rs 69 crore at current exchange rates) in a fresh funding round, two persons directly in the know told TechCircle.
The company will raise this sum from new and existing investors including Sequoia Capital and Accel among others.
The company has already closed the round and will soon announce the deal, one of the persons mentioned above said.
Separately, the company has formally closed another small funding round, having raised the capital from new investor, impact firm Omidyar Network, the second person mentioned above said.
According to a recent RoC filing, Omidyar Network already invested $1 million (Rs 6.99 crore at current exchange rates) into Bounce. A back-of-the-envelope calculation shows that the company received this tranche at a valuation of nearly Rs 210 crore ($30 million).
In June this year, The Economic Times had reported that the company was in advanced talks to raise funding from Omidyar Network and Sunil Munjal of Hero Group.
However, the second person mentioned above said that not Hero Group, but another venture capital firm will be coming on board as the new investor.
E-mail queries sent to Vivekananda Hallekere, Varun Agni and Anil G, co-founders of Bounce, did not elicit a response at the time of filing this report.
Bounce recently acquired the India assets of Chinese bicycle sharing unicorn Ofo, which winded up operations in the country in July this year.
Over the past few months, the company closed multiple funding rounds in both equity and debt. In September, it secured $3 million (Rs 21.79 crore at current exchange rates) in venture debt from InnoVen Capital.
In August, it raised $12.2 million (Rs 83.6 crore then) in a round co-led by Sequoia Capital India and Accel.
The two-wheeler rental firm was started in 2014 by Hallekere along with Agni and Anil. The company initially offered motorbikes and scooters on rental primarily for urban commuters.
It tweaked its business model to the dockless scooter sharing service but has continued to run its rental business. With the Ofo deal, it will now offer dockless bicycle sharing. At the time of its funding round in August this year, Wickedride rebranded Metro Bikes into Bounce.
It also offers a monthly subscription-based plan where a user can pick up a bike or scooter from a metro station, take it home and drop it back at the station the next morning, information on the company’s website states.
Besides Bounce, the company also operates WickedRide, a premium motorbike rental platform that includes brands such as Harley Davidson, Benelli, Royal Enfield, Kawasaki, Triumph, Ducati, KTM and Americana.
Users can rent a bike on an hourly, weekly and monthly basis. The service is available across more than 10 locations including Bengaluru, Mysore, Jaipur, Manipal, Ahmedabad, Gokarna and even New Zealand, its website states.
Deals in the space
A few ventures in the broader online vehicle rental space have attracted investor attention in the past few months.
In April, online scooter rental platform Vogo raised $7 million (Rs 45.5 crore) in a round led by homegrown ride-hailing major Ola. Venture capital firms Stellaris Venture Partners and Matrix Partners had also put in money.
In February this year, car rental startup Zoomcar raised $27.6 million (Rs 176 crore) from automotive major Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd as part of a $40-million Series C round.