Less than a year after launching in Australia, India’s largest cab-hailing start-up Ola is planning to launch its service in the UK. Photo: Mint
Bengaluru: Less than a year after launching in Australia, India’s largest cab-hailing start-up Ola is planning to launch its service in the UK, as the SoftBank-backed venture gets increasingly confident about its ability to take on bigger rival Uber Technologies in markets outside India. On Tuesday, Ola said its plans to enter the UK and has obtained licences to operate in South Wales and Greater Manchester, and it will also launch operations in South Wales within the next month.
“Ola is excited to announce its plans for the UK, one of the world’s most evolved transportation markets. The UK is a fantastic place to do business and we look forward to providing a responsible, compelling, new service that can help the country meet its demanding mobility needs. We look forward to our continued engagement with policymakers and regulators as we expand across the country and build a company embedded in the UK,” said Bhavish Aggarwal, co-founder and CEO of Ola.
Ola’s latest moves to expand overseas is part of a broader company strategy to create a massive international business that will be generate consistent revenues, alongside its domestic Indian operations. Earlier this year in May, Ola (ANI Technologies Pvt. Ltd) expanded its service further in Australia and launched operations in Brisbane, the Gold Coast and Canberra.
Mint first reported on May 28 that Ola is adopting a holding company structure similar to that of India’s most successful internet startup Flipkart to boost the cab-hailing company’s valuation and improve the management of its businesses. As part of that strategy, Ola has also created a separate unit for its international business.
Apart from Ola, the likes of education technology start-up Byju’s are also getting increasingly confident about their ability to compete anywhere against bigger global rivals.
Mint also reported on May 25 that a growing number of Indian start-ups, including hotel brand Oyo Rooms and eyewear retailer Lenskart, are venturing overseas, as they grow increasingly confident about their business models and their ability to take on global rivals. Oyo recently launched its service in China, where it sees massive potential for growth.