GIF investee WhereIsMyTransport has announced $7.5 million in Series A funding to develop digital solutions for sustainable urban mobility in emerging markets.
The round includes further investment from GIF and Goodwell Investments, plus new strategic investment from Google, Nedbank, Liil Ventures, and Toyota Tsusho Corporation.
WhereIsMyTransport is a leading provider of data and technology solutions that improve public transport across Africa, Southeast Asia, India, and Latin America. The company’s innovative technology integrates formal and informal public transport data, and makes this information available – often for the first time – to governments, operators, third-party solution developers and citizens.
WhereIsMyTransport began its work in Africa in 2015, before expanding into India, Southeast Asia, and Latin America in 2018. With more than 750,000 km of routes in 39 cities, WhereIsMyTransport has more mobility data in emerging markets than any other organisation. The new investment will enable WhereIsMyTransport to further capitalise on its market-leading position by extending its global reach, scaling its data-collection practice, and developing new technology to translate complex data into useful information for commuters in the world’s fastest-growing low- and middle-income cities.
Mobility is a fundamental driver of social, political, and economic growth, and remains a critical stumbling block for billions of people living without reliable access to formal public transport services. They depend instead on vast, informally run transport networks that often operate in unsafe areas. The absence of information about these services makes them unreliable and unpredictable. WhereIsMyTransport’s data and technology offers solutions to this problem to offer basic freedom of movement people need to be able to improve their circumstances.
Devin de Vries, WhereIsMyTransport Chief Executive Officer, said: “We make the invisible visible, by collecting all kinds of data related to public transport, and turning the data into information that can be shared with the people who need it most. In emerging markets, the mobility ecosystem is complex; informal public transport doesn’t behave like formal public transport. Data and technology solutions that work well in London or San Francisco wouldn’t make anything like the same impact, if any at all, in the cities where we work. Our solutions are designed specifically to overcome these contextual challenges. Bringing these investors together to support our mission is not only an honour but real proof that we are building something meaningful and remarkable in the majority world.”
Alix Peterson Zwane, GIF Chief Executive Officer, said: “Informal and often unreliable mass transit is a significant problem that disproportionately affects poor people. We are excited to continue to work with WhereIsMyTransport to make mass transportation in emerging cities more accessible and more efficient. The company has expanded to new geographies since GIF’s initial investment, and we look forward to growing our partnership, and continuing to improve lives and create opportunities for people throughout the developing world.”