Dubai-based Uber’s rival Careem raises $350 million at $1B valuation
Careem, the Dubai-based multinational transportation network company and does app-based car booking services. With the help of the Careem mobile app, passengers can book for both immediate and later rides. Careem is available in 11 countries across the globe and over 40 cities in North Africa, Middle East, and South Asia.
Uber Vs Careem
Both Careem and Uber have been running in Dubai for the past few years. And the common question that arises in the people’s mind is that ‘which is better’? To find an answer to this question, here are the comparisons between Uber and Careem in different aspects.
Both Uber and Careem allow the passengers to book a car from the comfort of their smartphone. There is no issue of dealing with call centers and there are no problems of helping the lost driver navigate to the user’s location. In both the apps, with just a few taps the user can pull the driver to his location. Both apps will help the user by providing an estimate of how far the driver is, and they also have an option to contact the driver and can specify the drop off location to have a fair price estimate.
In the case of the Uber app, it will show the user, the most recent locations that they have traveled. Careem also does the same and allows the users to mark some places as their favorite locations and they can one-tap access for those locations. In this aspect, Uber takes the advantage over its iPhone app. Careem doesn’t have higher resolution on iPhone 6/6s/7 and it gives stretched view to the user.
Both Careem and Uber come under the premium service, so the cars from both reflect the same. The basic car from Careem that is there to pick the customer is Lexus. In Uber, users will get a BMW, Toyota Previa, etc. cars from both the companies are clean and they reach the customer on time. If the users are willing to pay higher they can opt for luxurious cars.
Careem has kids option too, the car will have one child seat, which is there for the young riders. It is one of the best ways to promote customer safety within the car. Usually, parents will make the kids sit on their lap or kids will not be buckled in a proper way. So in the matter of safety, Careem will be better than Uber.
Booking a ride
Both the services offer both immediate or later booking services. For booking a ride, users have to simply choose the car type, enter their preferred date and time and the car will be booked on that particular date. Uber will allow the user to book UberSelect in advance. With Careem, users can book any of the company’s cars in advance. Cars booked immediately will be immediately assigned to a driver; it will not take even a minute. After this, users can track their drivers using the app. Careem also allows the users to setup recurring rides. If the passenger needs the driver to pick them every day during the week, users can easily set this from the app. Now, both the services allow the users to pay the cash in hand also.
When it comes to booking a ride, Careem has an advantage over Uber. Careem website acts like a booking portal if the users don’t wish to access the app. Uber’s website will show only the user’s profile and the latest trip details. Users can book their trip only through the app. With the Careem’s website users can book their trip and another person’s trip easily. This will be perfect for the scenarios such as Personal assistant booking cars for their executives.
Pricing is one of the most important things when it comes to booking a ride. In Uber and Careem, users pay a premium price when compared to a traditional taxi. Users can get better cars and they can request the driver to come to their doorstep. In terms of pricing, Ube r is cheaper than Careem.
Uber may implement surge pricing at the peak hours or at emergency situations. Sometimes surge pricing will be high, especially during the times when there are any popular events in the city. Careem also implements dynamic surcharge during the peak hours, but during the normal times, Uber’s price will be cheaper than Careem.
Both Uber and Careem have free rides. They have place to place free rides and the users earn credit if they encourage others to sign up the app. For Careem, both the user and their friend get AED 30 credited to their account. In the case of Uber, both the user and the friend get AED 40 off of their next two rides.
In both the ways this is a pretty good incentive. So users can join these families and start sharing their promo codes.
Both Careem and Uber provide promotions and unique offers. When it comes to promotions, Careem often provides the promotional offers to its customers. Careem not only operates its business but it helps the community also. Careem helped the people when there was a fire accident in Dubai Marina. The company is also active on social media and it has started to provide more friendly services to the customers.
Careem raises $350 million
Careem has announced that it had raised $350 million led by the Saudi Telecom Company (STC) and Japanese eCommerce firm Rakuten. This investment gives Careem a valuation of $1 billion. STC has revealed that it had acquired 10% of Careem for $100 million.
Four-year-old Careem has about 150,000 drivers. The company calls its drivers as “captains”. It has about six million users across different regions. This firm has previously raised $72 million. The money seems going towards market expansions. Careem has recently opened its branch in Turkey and it has plans to expand its business in Pakistan, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia. The company has planned to create one million jobs by expanding its driver pool and some of its money in Research and Development field. Careem has decided to spend $1 million to bring out innovation in transportation related technology.
The company is inspired to work with the world-class partners like Rakuten and STC. These partners bring significant institutional backing for Careem’s new horizons and help in global technology leadership and local experience and it brings the company close to the people. It fulfills the mission of improving the lives of everyone in the region.
The company said that $350 million allocation in the first tranche of $500 million and it is working on currently with this. The company didn’t provide any timeframe for the completion of this raise.
Rakuten is also an investor for the rivals such as Uber, Lyft, Cabify a South American based company, and STC. STC is making its deal to invest in the innovative digital world.
Uber is present in 400 cities across the globe, including the Middle East regions and in this region, it has financial ties also. Uber said that it has about 395,000 active users in the Middle East region. In Saudi Arabia, women are not permitted to drive, but 80% of the Uber’s drivers are female.
Anand Rajendran is the Co-Founder and CEO of Zoplay. He is a writer and coffee lover. He has is a graduate in Computer Science and Post Graduate in Entrepreneurship and leadership from Ulyanovsk State University, Russia. He is a passionate blogger & SEO Specialist. Zoplay is a Software Development company which has launched Cabily Script which is a Uber Clone with Android and iOS apps.