Press Release: Swvl announces definitive agreement to acquire Zeelo to become a leading global mass transit tech platform
Swvl is expanding its footprint to USA and South Africa, and increasing presence in the UK.
Swvl Holdings Corp (NASDAQ: SWVL), a global provider of transformative tech-enabled mass transit solutions, has announced a definitive agreement to acquire Zeelo, the UK’s largest smart bus platform and technology scale-up, measured by bookings. Joining forces with Zeelo builds upon Swvl’s recent successful acquisitions of Viapool and Shotl, and announced acquisitions of Volt Lines and door2door, and provides a launchpad to rapidly land and expand business operations in three strategic developed markets including the UK, South Africa and the US with Zeelo’s seasoned team of over 160 staff across the globe, including 29 software engineers based out of Zeelo’s R&D hub in Barcelona.
In alignment with Swvl’s mission, Zeelo has a well-recognized commitment to driving the shift from single-occupancy vehicles to zero-emission mass transit and deploying transportation services to connect more people to work and educational opportunities. The acquisition is expected to be completed in May 2022.
Mostafa Kandil, Swvl Founder and CEO, said, "Swvl was founded on the belief that accessible transportation is essential to unlocking economic opportunity. Swvl and Zeelo share a vision and mission to provide reliable transportation that gets riders where they need to go in an affordable, safe, and environmentally-friendly manner. With an impressive suite of turnkey TaaS and SaaS solutions and an established footprint in the United Kingdom, South Africa, and the United States, Zeelo rapidly advances our leading market position as a provider of technology-enabled mass transit solutions on a global scale.”
The transaction provides Swvl enhanced scale, strengthens its capabilities and creates substantial value for shareholders:
Drives continued global expansion: Deepens penetration in the attractive UK market and provides an entry point into the US and South Africa
Offers a complementary suite of B2B mobility solutions with proven ability to reduce overall costs for organizations:
Leading fully managed TaaS platform connects riders via their employers and schools to operators and drivers
SaaS licensing platform enables third party fleet operators to manage own programs
Asset light-delivery model by partnering with existing fleet partners, including over 200 bus operators in the UK and the US
Provides access to a blue-chip enterprise customer base:
Contracts established with major employers and schools across >100 sites
Proven track record of expanding customer deployments with multi-site customers already in place
Sam Ryan, Zeelo Founder and CEO, said, "Swvl is revolutionizing the mass transit industry and we are thrilled to join forces with them on this next phase of Zeelo’s journey to firmly establish smart bus transport as the best-in-class shared mobility solution that takes account of all income levels and the needs of ordinary, every-day travelers. Bus transport done well with tech can take us beyond our dependency on cars and taxis which are not suitable for commutes from non-urban areas. We look forward to bringing Swvl insights from Zeelo’s strategic pivot during the global pandemic and we’ve been impressed by Swvl’s fast growth in challenging markets. We are excited to leverage their global experience as we embark on a shared journey to develop safe, affordable, and low emission mass transportation options, and expand economic opportunity for the people who need it most through our mobility solution. Especially shift workers, professionals and students living in transport-poor areas in the developed markets."
Youssef Salem, Swvl CFO, said, "The acquisition of Zeelo offers Swvl a superb entry point into the US and South Africa, extends our position in the UK, and provides a complementary suite of new mobility products. Combined with our past acquisitions and announced acquisitions, today’s announcement further demonstrates our ability to utilize our growth capital and public currency to pursue organic and inorganic strategic initiatives. We look forward to capitalizing on the numerous opportunities provided by this transaction to advance our market position as a provider of technology-enabled mass transit solutions on a global scale."
Zeelo is an asset-light technology company that modernizes daily bus commutes to serve the needs of frontline workers and students through B2B contracts with organizations and family-run bus operator networks. Zeelo’s system is used by large businesses, staffing agencies, independent schools and universities across the UK, South Africa and the US that need to provide a private travel solution to people living in areas with poor transport links. Its services model includes a driving accreditation school, contracted fleets, and proprietary technology including a SaaS platform and multiple customer apps, which leverage smart GPS route optimization and ride-sharing software.
Swvl is a global provider of transformative tech-enabled mass transit solutions, offering intercity, intracity, B2B and B2G transportation across more than 115 cities across 20 countries and four continents. The Company's platform provides complimentary semi-private alternatives to public transportation for individuals who cannot access or afford private options. Every day, Swvl's parallel mass transit systems are empowering individuals to go where they want, when they want – making mobility safer, more efficient, accessible, and environmentally friendly. Customers can book their rides on an easy-to-use proprietary app with varied payment options and 24 / 7 access to high-quality private buses and vans.
Swvl was co-founded by Mostafa Kandil, who launched Carmudi in the Philippines, which became the largest car classifieds platform in the country in just six months. He then served as Rocket Internet's Head of Operations. In 2016, Kandil joined Careem, a ride-sharing company and the first unicorn in the Middle East, where he launched services in multiple new markets.
For additional information about Swvl, please visit www.swvl.com.
Zeelo is a smart bus platform for organizations. The global tech company is modernizing daily bus commutes for frontline workers and students so that they can get to work and school in a faster, smarter, and much greener way. Zeelo serves large businesses and independent schools and moves nearly 150,000 riders each month across the world. Zeelo’s tech-optimized bus routes not only reduce carbon emissions by 78% by replacing 30 cars for every bus journey, but also offset 100% of each Zeelo bus journey. Its innovative transport management software system comprises a SaaS platform, proprietary routing algorithms, multiple consumer apps, which leverage smart GPS route optimization and ride-sharing software, and 24 / 7 customer service support that ensure people located in transport deserts have a regular, subsidized and sustainable bus service for their daily commute, wherever they are based (4.8 / 5 Trustpilot rating). Headquartered in London with over 160 employees, an R&D team in Spain and live operations in the UK, South Africa and the US, Zeelo was founded in 2016 by Sam Ryan, Barney Williams and Dani Ruiz. It closed its Series A in 2018 and has achieved almost US$ 20m in VC-backed investment from ETF Partners, InMotion Ventures and Dynamo. The co-founders previously sold their pioneering ride-sharing app JumpIn to Addison Lee in 2014.