Transit tech company Via pays $110M in $3.5B valuation • TechCrunch

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On-demand ride-hailing and transportation technology company Via raised another $110 million, bringing the company’s total funding to nearly $1 billion. The fresh capital raises Via’s value to $3.5 billion in November 2021 at the same price per share from the company’s previous financing.

Via intends to use the funds to advance its vision that “every city in the world can access this end-to-end digital infrastructure to enable, plan, operate, analyze and optimize transit networks across every vertical. Within that transit network, Via’s CEO and co-founder Daniel Ramot told TechCrunch.

Transportation technology software helps public transit agencies, municipalities, and school districts optimize fixed bus routes, strategize the placement of new bike lanes, plan paratransit and school bus services, and integrate private on-demand sharing services into a city’s overall transportation ecosystem. The company has already grown to 600 communities and more than 35 countries.

With new mobility units popping up that threaten to crowd already crowded streets and strain already tight budgets, Ramot thinks the startup could do more.

Through in-house development or mergers and acquisitions, Via wants to use the money to add more products to its device portfolio. The company is still considering its options, but a few ideas Ramot and I have thrown around include expanding Via’s road mapping software to plan traffic lights and speed bumps. adding parking and curb management software; managing fleets of electric vehicles and their multiple chargers; micro mobility planning; And incorporating autonomous vehicles into the mix.

Via is currently working with AV companies Mobile and May Mobility to deploy autonomous ride-sharing bikes in Las Vegas, Nevada and Grand Rapids, Minnesota.

“The idea is to use our tools to plan the infrastructure in the most efficient, most secure, most efficient way and then design the transmission network that sits on top of that infrastructure,” Ramot told TechCrunch. “We may want to control access. Going right through the traffic lights, for example – if there are 50 people at the traffic light and then a car with one person, the traffic light doesn’t have the intelligence to give the bus the right of way, but you might want it to do so. And those are just the supply-demand matching algorithms that our system is so good at doing.

Via’s fundraising comes at a time when startups are hungry for fresh cash and investors are on the lookout. Ramot says Via is in some ways in the right place at the right time — transit agencies are still reeling from the impact of COVID-19 on ridership patterns, and are more than comfortable pulling into the 21st century with digital tools. and data sets.

“In the past, it was very difficult to convince cities and transit agencies to adopt new technology, move to flexible routing or data-driven services,” Ramot said. “I wouldn’t say it’s easy, but it’s gotten easier.”

Via has been able to demonstrate to investors that it has a sustainable business. The company It has announced an annual revenue run of more than $200 million through 2022, more than double its previous $130 million financing round in November 2021.

That’s when it was secretly made public. Given last year’s market volatility, the company hasn’t been able to move forward yet, but Via says it’s more than ready to make the first move if the market opens up and it makes sense to do so. While Via doesn’t need to raise more money to continue operating at its current clip, the money gives the startup an “option” to go public when the time comes, Ramot says.

$110 million was raised from a combination of new and existing investors. 83 North led the round, with participation from Exor NV, Pitango, Janus Henderson, CF Private Equity, Plaven Entrepreneur Ventures, Riverpark Ventures and ION Crossover Partners.

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