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The round would come just over one year after the 10-year-old San Francisco company raised a $300 million Series D led by SoftBank Vision Fund that valued it at $800 million, according to its Crunchbase profile. Toyota Motor Corp. also participated in that round, which brought Getaround’s total raised over time to $443 million.
While it’s a little unusual for companies to raise less money in subsequent rounds, one has to wonder if Getaround simply needed more cash after shelling out $300 million earlier this year for Paris-based Drivy, a car rental marketplace focused on the European market. That deal gave Getaround a presence in six European countries: France, Germany, Spain, Austria, Belgium and the United Kingdom. At the time of the acquisition, Getaround noted that Drivy “had built a community of two and a half million users.”
The Sector In Context
Getaround wants to make it super easy for people to rent cars. It gives them the option to rent vehicles from people, rather than just from traditional rental agencies. To make the process even more flexible, people can rent cars by the hour, and not just by the day. All the cars are connected so customers can unlock them from the company’s app, according to Getaround’s website, and “all trips are covered with insurance and 24/7 roadside assistance.”
The company’s services are available in over 300 cities around the world – 140 U.S. cities and 170 cities in Europe, such as Barcelona, Berlin and London. The company touts giving people a way to make extra money while also “making a positive impact on the environment” by helping have fewer cars on the road.
Getaround is not the only company in the transit space raising significant funding. Last month, Alex Wilhelm and I wrote about Scoop, which has a service that helps people form carpools with coworkers and other nearby people, raising $60 million.
Last year, Jason Rowley wrote about how transportation upstarts raise more frequently than the global average. At that time, he wrote “Whereas the world average is roughly 24 months between rounds, the average transportation startup raises a new VC round roughly every 18 months. Again, those are averages and there are outliers on both the high and low ends.” Indeed, Getaround would be an example of a transportation startup raising sooner rather than later.
We reached out to Getaround for comment and the company said via email that it did not comment “on funding speculation” until it had news to announce.
“Getaround and our investors work closely together on our growth strategy, and we’ll definitely plan to share more when we’re ready,” the company said.
Sidenote: in trying to research whether carsharing was one word, two words or hyphenated, I came across the site for the Carsharing Association, which “seeks to improve access to reliable, affordable transportation while providing a viable option for communities to move away from a culture of personal car ownership.” Pretty cool.
Illustration: Li-Anne Dias
Note: This article was updated post-publication with a comment from Getaround.