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Indigo Holdings has reportedly acquired a 5% stake in a transportation application called Carvanro.
Indigo Holdings has reportedly acquired a 5% stake in a transportation application called Carvanro.

App-Based Cab Transport Receives Fresh Funding

Foreign direct investment is gradually transforming how people commute in Tehran
Indigo invested €176,800 in a series A fundraising round, following the app’s initial investment by Stockholm-based Pomegranate Investment in 2016

App-Based Cab Transport Receives Fresh Funding

This week has seen international investment venture capital groups enter the local online app-based car transport sector with at least one Isle of Man Douglas-based firm and one South African  operator adding capital to the burgeoning people-moving industry. 
South Africa’s biggest mobile operator MTN agreed to invest a hitherto unknown amount into its local joint venture, Iran Internet Group, following a previous tranche of $22 million in 2016, Reuters reported on Tuesday.
The new funding is likely to be directed towards several of its investments in the country including ride hailing app snapp.ir, which has seen several attempts in recent weeks to limit or even stop the service. 
Snapp app follows the internationally famous Uber system which allows people to hail a car (not a regular taxi) to take them to a destination at a reduced cost. The Snap app and its major competitor in the market Tap30 have become popular modes of transport in recent months. 
The announcement by the South African telecom firm follows several reports about the company failing to repatriate funds from Iran due to banking difficulties in the wake of the 2015 nuclear agreement with the world powers.
Seeing the banking hurdles, MTN put aside a remaining part of its accrued $1 billion in savings through the sanctions period to use in its ride hailing investment. 

 Carvanro Investment
Meanwhile, Isle of Man-based Indigo Holdings, which is connected to London-based Pelican partners through its executive director, Sarem Edward Kerman, has reportedly acquired a 5% stake in another transportation application called Carvanro.com, which unlike Snapp and Tap30 allows users to share cars through an app based system. 
Carvanro is a car ride-sharing marketplace aggregator, which connects drivers and passengers embarking on the same car journeys.
According to Stock Market Wire, Indigo invested €176,800 in a series A fundraising round, following the app’s initial investment by Stockholm-based Pomegranate Investment in 2016 for over €100,000 Swedish media reported in February 2016. That company’s website says Pomegranate Investment invested less than 2% of its portfolio in the car sharing app. 

 Possible Careem Entry
That is not all, according to sources close to UAE-based Careem currently in Tehran, that app could be making market entry in the next few months. 
One source who asked not to be named, said he was contacted by the popular ride hailing app to “prepare the ground for a marketing exercise” in the coming months. 
When quizzed on what the company’s plans could be, the person said, that details were not confirmed, but added “the company is definitely interested in Iran.” 
Careem is now believed to be valued at $1 billion dollars, after having entered 11 Middle East and South Asian markets over the past five years and outranks Uber in terms of number of drivers across the wider region.
Accordingly, the firm also announced it will invest a further $150 million in its Pakistan operations on February 7. 
Revealing the plans in an Interview with the Pakistani newspaper Tribune, the company said tt in the near future it will expand its services to 30 more cities in Pakistan creating a further 1 million jobs within the network. 

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