Public transport group Swvl confirms proposed $100 million acquisition of British startup Zeelo

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Public transport group Swvl has confirmed to TechCrunch its deal to buy British startup Zeelo, valued at $100 million, according to sources.

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An Egyptian startup providing shared transportation services for intercity and intracity travel recently expanded into Turkey with its receiving volt lines. Earlier this year it became public (NASDAQ: SWVL) via SPAC.

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The agreement to acquire Zeelo, which claims to be the UK’s largest smart bus platform for manual workers and students, complements Swvl’s recent acquisitions of Viapool and Shotl, as well as the announced acquisitions of Volt Lines and door2door.

The deal means that Swvl will be able to expand into the UK, South Africa and the US through the presence of Zeelo, which has more than 160 employees in the UK and Barcelona.

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Zeelo’s model involves moving from single-seat vehicles to zero-emission public transport to the workplace. The acquisition is expected to be completed in May 2022.

Mostafa Kandil, founder and CEO of Swvl, said in a statement: “Swvl was founded on the belief that affordable transportation is essential to unleash economic opportunity. Swvl and Zeelo share the vision and mission of providing reliable transportation that gets passengers where they need to go in an affordable, safe and environmentally friendly way.”

The company says the deal will expand Swvl’s B2B offering with a managed TaaS (Transport as a Service) platform that connects drivers through their employers and schools with operators and drivers; SaaS licensing platform for third party fleet operators; partnerships with existing fleet partners (eg 200 bus operators in UK and US).

Sam Ryan, founder and CEO of Zeelo, added: “Swvl is revolutionizing the public transit industry and we are thrilled to join forces with them in this next phase… Well-equipped with technology, bus transport can take us out of our reliance on cars and taxis.” which is not suitable for travel from non-urban areas…. especially shift workers, professionals and students living in transport-poor areas of developed markets.”

Swvl and Zeelo, as well as the better known Via in the US or FlixBus in Germany, are hoping to disrupt the public transport industry with their private bus booking platform. This means that buses are more sensitive to demand than scheduled routes. There is also an environmental aspect as it takes private cars off the road. Swvl shares, valued at $850 million, fell during a broader decline in technology stocks.

Zeelo was founded by two British entrepreneurs who sold their startup to Addison Lee in 2014.

A total of $19.6 million was raised. The latest round was a $12 million Series A round led by ETF Partners (Green Technology Fund) involving InMotion Ventures (Jaguar Land Rover’s corporate venture fund) and Dynamo (a US mobility and supply chain venture capitalist), which has concluded. in August 2021. Business angels include Liam Griffin (CEO Addison Lee), who was the business’s first sponsor.


Credit: techcrunch.com /

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