Dubai: Car rental services company Udrive has received $5 million from Dubai’s startup investment arm Cultiv8 and Oman Holding International. Udrive has seen strong growth in 2021, recording two million trips to date, making it one of the largest per-car transaction rental booking platforms in the region.
“Mobility technology is one of the key investment sectors our technology fund is focusing on, and Udrive is a perfect fit with the fund’s guidelines and fund manager’s ambitions,” said Arif Alawi, CEO of Cultiv8. “With the newly formed Board of Directors and management team, we are excited for Udrive’s continued triple-digit growth in the MENAT region in 2022.”
Muscat-based Oman Holdings International, owner of Budget Oman, joined Cultiv8 in the funding round. OHI’s knowledge of space “will support Udrive’s commitment to doubling its annual revenue target and vehicle fleet,” the company said.
Udrive said the latest round of investment will support its future expansion in the region and technology improvements. The focus will be on streamlining the customer experience, an example of which has been the automatic parking payment system, in which the car determines where it is parked and automatically pays the corresponding meter charges.
“We can expect to see sweeping changes in the way cars will be used both globally and regionally,” said Eihab Saleh, director and CEO of Oman Holdings International. “Udrive presented their well-articulated plan to successfully enter new markets, which made our decision to invest easier. We believe their product roadmap is set to dramatically change the way cars are ‘consumed’ and used in the MENAT region.”
Car sharing platforms have grown exponentially around the world as well as in the Middle East. By 2026, the number of users in the carsharing segment is expected to reach 60.7 million and according to a report by Valuates, the global carsharing market will reach $103 billion by 2025.