Ride-hailing firm Ola looks to diversify into NBFC segment
In a diversification move, home-grown cab-hailing major Ola has reportedly applied for a licence to start a non-banking financial company (NBFC).
The Economic Times (ET) on Monday reported, quoting people it did not name, that the move comes at a time when Ola’s ride-hailing business growth is slowing down.
The ET report added that the company is looking to “deepen a short-term credit service it currently provides on a pilot basis to riders on its app”. The report also said that Ola is planning to launch a credit card, in association with a bank. It is also reportedly looking to sell insurance to the company’s driver-partners and riders.
The ET report also said that Ola’s mobile wallet Ola Money may be hived off as a separate entity.
Email queries to Ola went unanswered till the time of publishing the story.
Earlier this month, Flipkart co-founder Sachin Bansal had invested Rs 149.99 crore ($21.18 million then) in Ola.
For Ola, the funding came at a time when media reports said that it is in the midst of raising a larger $1 billion round. Online media publication YourStory, citing a highly-placed person in the know, stated that Ola will raise $2 billion in fresh funding.
Ola has entered three overseas markets—Australia, the United Kingdom and New Zealand—over the past year.
Foodpanda has expanded to 100 cities, by a recent announcement from the company.
However, Ola has also been battling a string of high-level exits in recent times. In January, Ola old-timer and interim chief operations officer (COO) Pallav Singh quit the company after serving almost seven years.
The development came eight months after senior vice-president Singh had taken over as COO following the departure of Vishal Kaul, who quit after serving the company for nearly one-and-a-half years.