Cab service Ola in talks to raise up to $1 bn: report

With competition heating up in the app-based taxi hailing space, ANI Technologies, the company that owns India's largest taxi aggregator Ola, is reported to be in talks to raise nearly $1 billion in another round of funding, even as its global rival Uber continues to build up a war chest for the Indian market.

The round of funding is expected to close by July-end. Existing investors SoftBank, Sequoia Capital and DST Global are expected to participate in the round. Joining them could be China's biggest taxi-hailing app Didi Kuadi. According to media reports, two new US investors are also expected to participate in the funding round.

Didi Kuaidi is already a global collaborator of Ola. Its participation would bring technology giants Google and Microsoft into the fray. It may be recalled that in May, Apple had invested $1 billion in Didi which dominates the Chinese market, while Uber raised funds in 2013 from Google Ventures, the investment arm of Google.

Ola is part of a global alliance that includes Didi Kuaidi, Indonesian taxi aggregator Grabtaxi and US-based Lyft, but it lags Uber by miles in the US market. Each of their app allows users to use their home app in each other's countries. Uber currently dominates the app-based taxi aggregator space in the US.

Uber plans to spend a big chunk of the $3.5 billion it had recently raised from Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund in India.