Vogo has raised nearly $180 million to date and counts Matrix Partners India, Kalaari Capital and Lightrock as investors.
Chalo has purchased another rival in order to extend its business offering, nearly five months after purchasing Amazon-backed app-based office shuttle startup Shuttl.
On Monday, the bus monitoring app announced the acquisition of Vogo, a tech-enabled shared mobility firm, for an unknown sum. Chalo believes Vogo will complement the company’s bus technology offerings by powering first and the last mile rides at major bus stations and other public areas, allowing customers to commute to and from bus stops.
Anand Ayyadurai, Padmanabhan Balakrishnan, and Sanchit Mittal founded the firm in 2016 to provide commuters with round-the-clock petrol-powered scooter rental services. Matrix Partners India, Kalaari Capital, and Lightrock are among the investors in the firm, which has raised almost $180 million to far.
The Vogo founders and crew would remain with the firm, with Ayyadurai taking on a leadership role at Chalo. According to the firm, Balakrishnan would be the new CEO of Vogo Pre-COVID, which claims to complete 50,000 rides each day in Hyderabad and Bengaluru.
“This acquisition offers Chalo key strategic gains. Now we will be able to offer a convenient and cost-effective option for bus passengers to travel to and from bus stops, solving the door-to-door daily commute. This will increase bus ridership and serve our core purpose of making travel more convenient and reliable for all,” Vinayak Bhavani, cofounder and chief technology officer (CTO) of Chalo, said.
However, as a result of this acquisition, Vogo will now transition to low-powered electric cars, which are safer, more appropriate for short distances, and more cost efficient. In order to meet market demands, the firm will expand beyond two-wheelers and provide additional forms of electric cars.
“We have already begun our transition to a 100% electric fleet and will also expand into new vehicle categories to serve people better,” Vogo’s cofounder and latest CEO Balakrishnan, said.
Only a few months ago, Chalo received $40 million in a round headed by Lightrock India and Filter Capital. Notably, Lightrock is also a Vogo investor.
Chalo claims to be present in 37 cities throughout 13 Indian states, including Delhi NCR, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Kerala, and others.
Chalo’s strategy is to make using the bus more convenient, hence increasing Chalo’s bus ridership.
Chalo, founded in 2014 by Vinayak Bhavnani and carwale.com cofounder Mohit Dubey, provides live bus monitoring as well as a live passenger indicator that reveals how busy the bus is in real-time.
It now operates in 37 cities in 13 Indian states, including Maharashtra, Delhi NCR, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, and others.
Following the acquisition, Chalo intends to expand Vogo to all 37 cities.
As a result of this transaction, the two-wheeler rental platform will now transition its whole fleet to electric vehicles (EVs). Vogo plans to grow beyond two-wheelers and provide additional types of EVs to meet market demands.