October 11, 2017
Alex Wilhelm is the Editor in Chief of Crunchbase News, covering the intersection of startups and money.
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Morning Report: Ola raised $1.1 billion more, and may have another $1 billion awaiting it. The Great Ridesharing Wager continues.

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Ola has greatly expanded its capital base by raising over one billion dollars led by Tencent. The company also reports that it is in “advanced talks” to raise another billion, bringing its new round’s total value to “over US$2 billion.”

Ola competes with Uber, Didi, and other ridesharing companies with large aspirations.

The scale of Ola’s raise is unlikely to surprise observers in the sector. After all, Ola will have raised around $4 billion when this round is all said and done. Uber’s equity sales and debt have brought in over $11 billion. Didi itself has raised over $15 billion.

So what is another billion or two on top of the total? Not much, perhaps, in comparative terms, but in terms of raw scale, quite a lot.

Back in August, when rumors swirled that Go-Jek — another ridesharing company — would raise over $1 billion, also led by Tencent, we asked “how many billions does it take to make ridesharing work?”  We joked that the answer was always “more.” Toss in the impending Uber-SoftBank deal, and there are almost more billion-dollar-plus ridesharing deals this year than I can keep straight without a scratch pad.

Uber’s ridesharing business is gross margin positive, we learned after the company disclosed elements of its third-quarter financials. That bodes well for its industry, as it is possible to generate gross profit off of ridesharing. If that gross profit can become real profit is the next question.

There are a few people betting a couple bucks that it can. We’ll see.

From the Crunchbase Daily:

HelloFresh files for $352M IPO

  • Meal kit provider HelloFresh filed to raise up to $352 million in an initial public offering on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. The Berlin-based company, which has raised more than $360 million in venture funding, is currently unprofitable but laid out a strategic goal to reach breakeven in 15 months.

India’s Ola raises $1.1B to battle Uber

  • Ola, Uber’s chief rival in India, has raised $1.1 billion in a new financing led by Tencent and joined by SoftBank. The ride-hailing company is also in advanced talks with other investors for another $1 billion.

Icon Ventures closes sixth fund

  • Icon Ventures, a Palo Alto,Calif.-based technology VC firm, has closed on $265 million for its sixth fund. The firm, which principally focuses on Series B and C investments, also plans to open a satellite office in SanFrancisco.

Here’s what happened in Q3

  • Crunchbase News has aggregated all our charts and tables covering venture investment in Q3 of 2017. Catch up on global Q3 investment trends here and U.S. trends here.