Uber rival Ola today said it has raised $500m (£362m) from private equity backers as it gears up for a stock market float.
The Indian ride-hailing giant, which is backed by Softbank, said the cash injection had been secured from Temasek and Warburg Pincus in the company’s first funding round for two years.
Ola did not give any details about its initial public offering, but said it was continuing to expand its business in different regions and categories.
“Over the last 12 months we’ve made our ride hailing business more robust, resilient and efficient,” said Bhavish Aggarwal, Ola chairman and chief executive.
“With strong recovery post lockdown and a shift in consumer preference away from public transportation, we are well positioned to capitalise on the various urban mobility needs of our customers.”
Ola suffered a severe hit last year as lockdowns decimated demand. The company was forced to cut more than a third of its workforce while business slumped 95 per cent.
Ola is one of Uber’s major rivals in the crowded UK ride-hailing market, alongside other competitors such as Gett and Kapten.
In October Transport for London banned Ola from operating in the capital, after it found the company was “not fit and proper” to have its licence renewed.
Ola said it would appeal the decision and continues to operate in the interim.
But it could be facing fresh competition after it emerged that Chinese app Didi has secured its first licences to operate in the UK.
The planned IPO comes amid a frenzy of stock market listings for Indian startups flush with cash from investors. Twenty-two Indian companies have gone public so far this year.