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Meru Cabs Raises $25 Mn From Bennett, Coleman and Co. Ltd (BCCL)

Meru Cabs Raises $25 Mn From Bennett, Coleman and Co. Ltd (BCCL)

Brand Capital, the investment arm of Bennett, Coleman and Co. Ltd (BCCL), has invested $25 Mn (INR 150 Cr) in Mumbai-based cab service provider Meru Cabs.

Meru plans to use these funds to further strengthen its foothold in the Indian market with a focus on providing quality service based on a sustainable business model, increase brand salience, and brand awareness with the aim of widening its customer base.

Siddhartha Pahwa, CEO of Meru Cabs said, “With the ongoing transformation in the taxi industry, this move is in line with Meru’s efforts to showcase its services to a larger customer segment via a bouquet of media channels.”

With Brand Capital’s association, Meru will now be able to accelerate the process of creating the requisite brand positioning as well as awareness for customers, present across various media platforms like Print, OOH, digital, and social media.

Meru proclaims to be the only profit making taxi services company for its combined businesses of taxi operator and taxi aggregator. The company has expanded to 24 additional cities, launched four unique services, and grown its fleet size to 20,000 vehicles since May 2015, after it raised $50 Mn (INR 300 Cr) from India Value Fund Advisors (IVFA).

Meru is said to be the first taxi player to introduce the Carpool service, in October 2015. It also provides RideShare service, Meru-Eve-for women passengers and a specialised service for differently abled and elderly commuters called Meru Enable.

The taxi service provider claims that it receives over 70% of its booking from the mobile app and continues to adopt unique technology products to ensure seamless booking and navigation for its customers. It has integrated its booking system with Facebook’s Messenger Bot, which gives it an access to connect with millions of customers on a Pan India level.

Earlier in this year, it was reported that Times Internet had invested around INR 150 Cr to enter into a strategic partnership with Uber. The partnership was aimed to leverage Times Group’s assets across print, television and digital channels to expand its presence in key markets.

India’s organised taxi market is presently pegged at $1.2 Bn (INR 7,900 CR) and it is estimated to reach at $15 Bn (INR 1 lakh Cr) by year 2022. Although, the taxi market is flooded with the number of players in the domain, the homegrown player Ola, valued at $5 Bn, and Uber, valued at $68 Bn, are fighting for the top slot. The other competitors include, MyTaxiIndia, EasyCabs, InstaCabs, and more.

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