Ola kickstarts international expansion with Australia

CIOL Writers
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India's local cab-aggregator, Ola is taking its first step towards international expansion, starting with Australia. Ola, which counts Didi as an investor, announced today that it will soon begin inviting private vehicle owners and driver partners to work with it in the cities of Sydney, Melbourne and Perth, with plans to start commercial operations in the country in early 2018.


The move further intensifies Ola's battle with the US ride-hailing service Uber that already has a presence in over 20 cities across the country and New Zealand. Ola isn’t the only new arrival, though. Europe’s Taxify — another company backed by Didi — moved into Australia via a Sydney launch in November. It has since expanded to Melbourne.

Founded in 2011, Ola claims over 125 million registered users and more than one million drivers across 110 cities in India. The company — which has raised over $2.5 billion from investors — said it is working to gain the necessary approvals to launch its service in Australia.

“We are very excited about launching Ola in Australia and see immense potential for the ride-sharing ecosystem which embraces new technology and innovation,” said Ola co-founder and CEO Bhavish Aggarwal.

“With a strong focus on driver-partners and the community at large, we aim to create a high-quality and affordable travel experience for citizens and look forward to contributing to a healthy mobility ecosystem in Australia,” he added.

Ola recently raised $1.1 billion from investors including Chinese internet giant Tencent and Japan’s SoftBank.

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