Ola has changed its priorities and decided to pull out of the two markets
The Bengaluru-based startup plans to expand into electric cars, cell manufacturing and financial services
Ola has shut down a number of businesses over the past few years, which includes foraying into food delivery three times and shutting it down thrice
The ride-sharing major Ola has decided to shut down its used car division Ola Cars and its quick commerce business, Ola Dash. The company will look to focus on its electric vehicles and mobility businesses from here on.
An official spokesperson told Inc42, “With this clear focus, Ola has reassessed its priorities and decided to shut down Ola Dash- its quick commerce business. Ola will also be reorienting its Ola Cars business to focus more on strengthening go to market strategy for Ola Electric. Ola Cars’ infra, technology and capabilities will be repurposed towards growing Ola Electric’s sales and service network.”
According to the Bengaluru-based unicorn, its ride-sharing business is generating its highest gross merchandise value (GMV) on record along with profitability, while the EV business has become the largest EV company in India.
Ola’s List Of Failed Initiatives
The Bengaluru-based startup has a list of initiatives that it has started and binned over the last few years.
Ola Cars was only launched last October, and it had then appointed Arun Sirdeshmukh as its CEO, formerly an Amazon Fashion and Reliance Trends executive. It had started the used cars business at an opportune time; the business had just started to gain traction in India.
In May 2022, Sirdeshmukh quit the used cars business and the company shut down operations in five cities, according to an Inc42 report citing CEO Bhavesh Aggrawal’s tweet.
At the same time, it has shut down its quick commerce business. It has been scaling its grocery delivery business down over the past few months and laid off around 2,100 employees in April 2022. While this remains unconfirmed, it would become the largest layoff in 2022 so far, according to Inc42’s Indian Startup Layoff Tracker.
The food delivery business has been pushed to the wayside on no less than three occasions.
In 2015, the company launched Ola Cafes, with the aim to provide food delivery. However, it shut it down a year later, along with Ola Stores, a grocery delivery business.
In 2019, it acquired foodtech startup Foodpanda to again foray into food delivery. However, the company did not return the numbers expected and the company shut it down, laying off its employees in the process.
The Bengaluru-based startup then tried to do something like Rebel Foods, with a number of food brands called Ola Foods. Ola’s food brands got the main company’s backing – it set up 50 cloud kitchens and even acquired public transportation startup Ridlr to have a bite at the cherry again. It shut the business down soon thereafter.
It scaled back its food delivery business for a third time in May 2022. The move came a month after it had forayed into 10-minute deliveries to compete with Zomato. The company is currently selling its kitchen equipment to salvage whatever it can from the cloud kitchens business.