As ride-hailing companies like Uber and Lyft continue to find their feet in a new landscape for transportation services -- where unessential travel is being actively discouraged in many markets and people remain concerned about catching the coronavirus in restricted, shared spaces -- a smaller player that has carved out a place for itself targeting business users is announcing more funding.
Gett, which started out as a more direct competitor to the likes of Uber and Lyft but now focuses mainly on ground transportation services for business clients in major cities around the world, said in a short statement that it has closed a round of $115 million. The company -- co-headquartered in London and Israel -- also said it is now "operationally profitable" and is hitting its budget targets.
The funding is being led by new backer Pelham Capital Investments Ltd. and also included participation from unnamed existing investors.
Including this round, Gett has now raised $865 million, with past investors including VW, Access and its founder Len Blavatnik, Kreos, MCI and more. Gett's last confirmed valuation was $1.5 billion, pegged to a $200 million fundraise in May 2019. It's not talking about current valuation, or any recent customer numbers, today.
Dave Waiser, Gett's founder and CEO, described the funding earlier today in a note to me as an extension to the company's previous round, a $100 million equity investment that it announced in July last year.
Chairman Amos Genish, said in a statement that the funding round was oversubscribed, "which shows the market’s interest in our platform and long-term vision. Gett is disrupting and transforming a fragmented market delivering ever-critical cost optimisation and client satisfaction."
The company has been building out a focus on the B2B market for several years now -- a smart way of avoiding the expensive and painful race to compete like-for-like against the Ubers of the world -- and this most recent round is focused on doubling down on that.
The Gett of the past -- it was originally founded in 2010 under the name GetTaxi -- did indeed try to build a business around both consumers and higher-end users, but the idea behind Gett today is to focus on corporate accounts.
Gett provides those businesses' employees with a predictable and reliable app-based platform to make it easier to order car services wherever they happen to be traveling, and those businesses -- which in the past would have used a fragmented mix of local services -- then have a consolidated way of managing, accounting for and analysing those travel expenses. It claims to be able to save companies some 25%-40% in costs.
The company previously said that its network covered some 1,500 cities. In certain metropolitan areas like London and Moscow, Gett provides transportation services directly. In markets where it does not have direct operations (such as anywhere in the U.S., including New York), it partners with third parties, such as Lyft.
“We are on a journey to transform corporate ground travel and I’m delighted that investors find our model attractive," Waiser said in a statement today. "This investment will allow us to further develop our SaaS technology and deepen our proposition within the corporate ground travel market."
Updated to correct that this is an extension of the $100 million round.