RideCo, a Waterloo, Ontario-based provider of on-demand transit technology, has secured C$20 million in Series A financing. The round was led by Silicon Valley venture capital firm Eclipse Ventures. RideCo’s software platform enables ridesharing for public transit riders around the world.
WATERLOO, ON, Feb. 17, 2022 /CNW/ — RideCo, the on-demand transit technology company making public transportation more convenient to ride while remaining cost effective to operate, today announced a $20 million Series A financing round led by Eclipse Ventures, a Palo Alto-based venture capital firm that invests in deep-tech companies that are digitally transforming essential physical industries.
Launched in Ontario, Canada in 2015 as North America’s first on-demand transit service, RideCo’s mission is to make transit convenient to ride and cost effective to operate. It partners with public transportation agencies, municipalities, and local fleet operators to design and operate on-demand transit services that alleviate travel pain points for riders – such as long travel times, lengthy walking distances, and low service frequency – as well as for agencies – such as high costs per ride, low productivity, and challenges attracting net new riders to transit systems. RideCo’s innovative software has powered more than 60 services throughout cities worldwide and has leading market share among the largest cities in both the United States and Canada.
“We built RideCo because our own family members were struggling to use transit to get to work, and we realized that this is an unnecessary challenge millions of people around the world struggle with daily,” said Prem Gururajan, Co-Founder and CEO of RideCo. “We asked ourselves: how can we simplify transit by making it more responsive to riders, dynamically routed, and ultimately, reduce the journey times for our loved ones. The RideCo team is solving an incredibly difficult mobility and engineering problem, and our implementations with some of North America’s largest transit agencies indicate we’re succeeding. As the impact of the pandemic continues to reshape how we move about cities, this new round of funding from Eclipse will help us continue to build and scale a dynamic transit software platform that makes transit more convenient, cost effective, and sustainable.”
RideCo, whose revenue and customer base has grown by more than 2x in the past year, will leverage its $20 million investment to further accelerate its growth and innovation in product engineering and customer support to deliver mobility success stories in more communities, both large and small. Since 2015, RideCo has replaced underperforming fixed-route buses in metropolitan cities like San Antonio and small towns like Cobourg, Ontario. It has modernized dial-a-ride in Houston and paratransit in Guelph and Porter County, and solved low-density area mobility in Cochrane, Alberta. RideCo helped Las Vegas commingle conventional and paratransit services using a shared fleet, bridged first and last-mile access in Calgary, and supported cities like Okotoks and Los Angeles in deploying innovative transit network transformation.
“At Eclipse Ventures, we seek out visionary companies that are transforming core physical industries and technologies that improve how people and goods move. RideCo is both,” said Seth Winterroth, Partner at Eclipse Ventures. “The last two years have seen a fundamental shift in the ways in which transit operates within cities, and has exposed a number of inefficiencies, outdated systems, and pain points that simply don’t need to exist. The RideCo team has achieved an engineering and technological marvel by streamlining highly complex transit systems to bring immediate benefits for agencies and riders. As cities continue to adjust to new transit flows, RideCo is well-positioned to solve their immediate challenges and the Eclipse Team is excited to work together to build a more sustainable, efficient future and define the next generation of transit.”
The ways in which people move about cities has been significantly impacted by the pandemic, which drove reductions in ridership in most cities as millions of employees began working from home or moved out of urban areas entirely. In response, transit agencies are turning to technology to re-imagine and future-proof their systems; over 15% of all transit agencies are already adopting on-demand transit technology, 26% are interested in exploring partnerships with providers, and Frost & Sullivan predicts that global revenues for the shared mobility market are estimated to reach approximately $1 trillion by 2025. On-demand transit provides many benefits for the rider and agency alike, including an improved passenger experience, lower cost per ride, increased ridership, adaptive operations, and more. By dynamically moving more people in fewer but more productive vehicles, RideCo is catalyzing a generational shift in how people get around cities and towns, impacting societies in three ways: riders spend less time in transit and more time doing what they enjoy; transit operators increase their ridership and cost efficiency; and together, the community solves traffic congestion and reduces its environmental impact.