Hyundai Motor, largest South Korean automaker, is going beyond selling cars in India. The auto major has turned its eyes to the rising self-drive car-sharing market here. In what could be seen as its first step in that direction, Hyundai Motor has co-invested Rs 100 crore in Revv, a home-grown car-sharing startup, and become its first automotive company investor.
Revv, in a statement on Thursday, said the Series B funding round was led by Hyundai Motor, along with new investors Dream Incubator, Sunjay Kapoor of Sona BLW, and Telama Investment. Its existing investors Edelweiss and Beenext also participated.
As a part of this strategic investment, Hyundai will work with Revv to develop an innovative car-sharing service and conduct creative marketing activities in India.
“Hyundai Motor India has been growing rapidly with its outstanding performance, and has become a strong market leader in India,” said Y.K. Koo, managing director and chief executive, Hyundai Motor India. “We are just about to step forward and expand our business into the future mobility field with Revv. Hyundai Motor India will build a prominent system with both ‘Open Innovation’ strategy and India’s fastest growing self-drive car-sharing company, Revv.”
Revv will use the freshly infused funds to expand its product offerings, for both long-duration and on-demand use cases, strengthen its technology team and build brand awareness. It also plans to increase its footprint to 30 cities during the next 12 months.
Founded by ex-McKinsey executives Anupam Agarwal and Karan Jain in July 2015, Revv has presence in 11 cities and serves more than 300,000 users.
The start-up aims to re-imagine mobility solutions for users’ needs ranging from “few hours to a few years”, to cater to the vast majority of Indians who do not own a car yet. Its products include hourly self-drive car-sharing, one-way outstation car-sharing and Switch—India’s first monthly car subscription programme, where members enjoy all the benefits of car ownership without any hassle, upkeep, and commitment.
According to Revv, the growth potential for mobility services is very strong in India, which is expected to reach $2 billion by 2020. “India is unlike other developing countries of comparable size with its unusually low levels of car ownership of 2%; the same number in China and the U.S. is 20% and 80%, respectively. For the other 98%, cabs solve the problem of going from point A to B, but almost every other need that a personal car would serve is an unsolved problem," said Agarwal and Jain in the statement.