Car-sharing firm Drivy bought in £231m deal
Fast-growing car-sharing platform Drivy has been bought by its largest global rival for 300 million US dollars (£231 million).
The deal will see US firm Getaround acquire the company to drive forward its expansion across Europe.
Drivy, which has more than 25,000 users in the UK and a fleet of 1,400 cars, was founded in Paris by Paulin Dementhon in 2010, and launched its London office in November 2017.
The number of people using car-sharing services is expected to increase almost threefold from around six million in 2017 to almost 18 million by 2025, according to research firm Frost & Sullivan.
The surge in growth has driven significant investment in the sector, with Drivy itself securing 43 million US dollars (£33 million) of investment since its foundation.
In the UK, Drivy has faced stiff competition from the likes of HiyaCar, Turo and ZipCar, which has more than 10,000 cars across the country.
Drivy users use the app to find nearby vehicles, unlock them with their smartphone and drive away.
Car-owners can rent out their vehicles through the platform, with comprehensive insurance from Allianz included.
Getaround, which has cars with patented technology enabling users to locate and unlock cars using their smartphone, received 300 million US dollars (£231 million) of funding from SoftBank’s Vision Fund in August last year.
The combined business will cover around 300 cities across the US and Europe and more than five million total users.
Drivy founder and chief executive Mr Dementhon said: “Getaround is an ideal partner for us because our companies are aligned in so many ways while being complementary on key aspects of our business, like geography or fleet acquisition.
“I look forward to seeing what we can accomplish together.”
Mr Dementhon will remain as the chief executive of Europe following the deal, to oversee the continuation of growth in the region.
Sam Zaid, Getaround founder and chief executive, said: “We are thrilled to be joining forces with the Drivy team as we move closer to our vision of creating a world where all cars are connected and shared.
“Consumers all over the world are embracing the ease, flexibility and freedom that connected car-sharing offers.”