Nexus Venture Partners leads Series A funding for Yolobus

Yolo TravelTech Pvt. Ltd, which operates inter-city transportation and mobility platform Yolo, has raised $3.3 million (nearly Rs 25 crore at current exchange rate) in its Series A round of funding led by Nexus Venture Partners.

Early stage VC firm India Quotient also participated in this round, the company said in a statement.

The company will use the capital to double down its investments across technology, customer, crew safety and sanitisation, among others.

“As an industry we’re just scratching the surface of how India’s bus services can be when married to our uber offerings of safety, sanitisation and comfort,” said Shailesh Gupta, CEO at Yolobus.

The company has so far raised $4.1 million in funding from a mix of HNIs and VC funds. Early this year, it raised $600,000 in its seed round of funding.

Suvir Sujan, managing director at Nexus Venture Partners, and Anand Lunia, co-founder of India Quotient, will be joining the board as part of the current transaction.

"Intercity ground mobility in India hasn’t kept up with the needs of the discerning urban traveller and is ripe for disruption. Yolobus is using technology and data science to redefine intercity bus travel experience" said Sujan.

Yolo was founded in August last year by Gupta, Danish Chopra and Mukul Shah. The startup says it provides passengers with comfortable, punctual and safe ride experiences.

While Yolo says it onboards buses to its platform after making sure they offer the services it advertises, bus aggregator startups operate on an asset-light model, preferring to partner with existing fleets and bus operators.

The company is introducing a sanitization tunnel for each passenger before onboarding in the pandemic. 

Another startup operating in the space is Travelyaari, which in August 2016 raised $7 million in a Series B funding round from investors such as Gujarat Venture Finance Ltd and Bennett Coleman & Co Ltd (BCCL). Travel platforms such as Ibibo, MakeMyTrip, and Paytm also offer their own bus ticketing services.

Recently, investor attention in the bus transportation segment has shifted to the intra-city commute model. Gurugram-based Shuttl, for instance, is set to raise $8.1 million (around Rs 57.42 crore) as part of its Series C funding round from SIG Global India Fund I, LLP. SIG Global is operated by the US-based quantitative trading firm Susquehanna International Group.

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