Deals

French ridesharing giant BlaBlaCar raises $100M, may actually take over the world

Above: The BlaBlaCar team gathers on its office's roof in Paris

Image Credit: BlaBlaCar

Update 7:06 a.m. ET: BlaBlaCar offers more details on its expansion plans.

Don’t let BlaBlaCar‘s ridiculous name fool you.

The French carsharing company just raised a sizable $100 million round from Index Ventures, Accel Partners, and more to “transform city-to-city travel.”

Unlike Uber, Lyft, Sidecar, and other startups lumped into the ridesharing genre, BlaBlaCar doesn’t intend to enlist full-time, or even part-time drivers. Founded in 2006, BlaBlaCar considers itself an alternative to city-to-city travel and claims it does not want to challenge the taxi industry. Rather than taking the Eurostar train system from London to Paris, you can book a seat in the car of someone who already plans to drive there.

BlaBlaCar cofounder Nicolas Brusson tells VentureBeat that the “typical journey” on BlaBlaCar averages around “200 miles” and costs the passenger “about $20.” Brusson claims BlaBlaCar drivers “offer their empty seats to passengers who book them the same way they would book a train ticket. The drivers are not making a profit, they are sharing a cost.”

Now available in 12 countries, BlaBlaCar has grown fast in Europe since expanding beyond France in 2012, and the firm aims to use its new funds for global expansion. According to Brusson, the startup is “looking at all large emerging markets, including Turkey and Brazil, and see no reason why what we do would not work in those markets.”

BlaBlaCar appears to have no presence in the U.S., but expanding into the States may be a lucrative move — it’s a large market with few inexpensive city-to-city transportation options, among them the agonizing Greyhound bus system.

More information:

Uber Technologies Inc is known as Everyone's Private Driver. Uber operates an on-demand car service used all over the world. With the touch of a button from your phone, you can experience your own private driver. Sign-up quickly, g... read more »

Powered by VBProfiles

17 comments
Loran Mutafov
Loran Mutafov

I just wrote them an email offering to help them expand in Bulgaria like 2 days ago. o_O

Abhinav Chandran
Abhinav Chandran

How do you suppose it would 'take over the world'? It would be cool if you avoid using such hyperbole just to lure readers into your article.

Richard Ortega
Richard Ortega

So hitch hiking 2.0 for a new generation? We added an app to facilitate hitch hiking?

Abhinav Chandran
Abhinav Chandran

Zimride has been doing this for years. They do a pretty good job too.

Joe Amodio
Joe Amodio

AKA, a monetized, safer (?) version of Craigslist' rideshare page. 

Zachariah Stevens
Zachariah Stevens

Anyone hear of Zimride --> Lyft? It's been done in the states already.

C. Karthik Vaidyanath
C. Karthik Vaidyanath

"May actually take over the world" - Guys, please let's not make Yourstory sound like Times Of India now.

Ryan M Bertoldi
Ryan M Bertoldi

Doubtful...Mitfahrtgelegenheit and a number of others are already extremely popular and aren't sunk in venture capital debt...much like France itself. Maybe they should've launched BlaBlaTrain and fixed their 50€ million train problem for buying cars too big for their tracks.