After splitting from Swvl, Volt Lines raises carve-out round
- Turkey-based ride-hail company Volt Lines has closed its carve-out round, with a 30 per cent oversubscription, after splitting from SWVL in January.
- Founded in 2017 by Aly Halabi, Volt Lines provides its corporate clients with mass transit and ride-hailing services utilising a network of smartly routed shared buses.
- SWVL has unwound its takeover of Volt Lines as a result of its falling stock price and its subsequent financial constraints.
- The round will aid Volt Lines, a Wamda Capital portfolio company, to get to its short-term objective of achieving positive free cash flow by the end of 2023.
Volt Lines announced today the successful closing of its carve-out round, with a 30% oversubscription versus the fundraising target. The target set for the round gives the Turkey-based scaleup twice the cash needed to get to its short-term objective of achieving positive free cash flow by the end of 2023.
“After successfully taking back control of the business in January, we’re happy to announce today that Volt Lines is well capitalized to navigate current market conditions and is on track to achieve positive free cash flow within the year,” said Ali Halabi, Founder, and CEO. Volt Lines has taken back control of its Dutch Holding Company’s shares from Swvl on January 16th, 2023, in a new SPA that reversed last year’s $65M acquisition.
Volt Lines nearly tripled its monthly recurring revenue since the start of 2022 and improved its margins by more than 25 percentage points. The company is expected to double its revenue again in 2023 thanks to strong back-to-office demand as well as its successful expansion into schools, all while being on track to become cash flow positive by Q4 of 2023. “Our team continues to execute flawlessly, and I’m honestly very impressed with what we’ve achieved in the last year. This gives me a lot of confidence and excitement about the future of Volt Lines.” Halabi added.
Volt Lines currently controls just under 1% market share of Turkey’s $2 billion corporate and school commute market, the majority of which is concentrated in Turkey’s largest city, Istanbul, which has a population of 20 million people and where the company’s HQ and R&D centre are located. The scaleup aims to capture a 10% market share by 2027 and has plans to transition to a fully electric fleet by 2030.
Volt Lines has operations in Istanbul, Ankara, and other cities in Turkey.
“Our short-term objectives go beyond just Turkey. We are now pursuing a dual strategy of continuing our profitable growth in the TaaS segment in Turkey while expanding our SaaS offering overseas.” Halabi added. The scaleup aims to open its 5-years in making B2B software for other operators abroad that want to digitalise their operations and transform their customer experience.
Being both a software developer and an operator in Turkey, Volt Lines is well-positioned to be a great technology partner for players abroad where a win-win setup can be established. Volt Lines operates and powers hundreds of bus lines and moves thousands of people every day. “We use this hands-on know-how to continuously improve our software stack and we believe the tech is ready for a debut on the world stage,” Halabi said.
Possible markets where this software can be offered to local partners include Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, the UK, and the UAE, where Volt Lines is already present in Abu Dhabi Global Market.
“Many investors felt that the strong team whose track record has been proven, attractive market opportunity, substantial revenue growth, and a clear path to becoming cash flow positive in 2023, made the opportunity very compelling,” said Tamer Bazzari, CEO of Dubai-based Genero Capital, who just joined the company’s board of directors.
Ersan Öztürk, the Co-Founder and CEO of Turkey’s largest corporate car leasing company Hedef Filo and Turkey’s largest free-floating car sharing scaleup TikTak said: “We have full confidence and trust in the business model of Volt Lines and believe in the management’s vision. Volt Lines has shown significant improvement in margins in its business, and we are always looking for ways to increase our shareholding position in the company. This carve-out round presented a great opportunity for us to do so.”