Cab aggregator Ola is looking at raising up to USD 100 million in fresh funding from existing shareholders to take American rival Uber head-on. The board of the Bengaluru-based company has approved a proposal to raise up to USD 100 million from existing shareholders in a recent meeting. Both Ola and Uber have made multi-million dollar investments in their operations in India to ramp up number of vehicles on their platform as well as getting new riders on board. The board approved the proposal to offer convertible securities at Rs 13,521 apiece through a rights issue at its meeting on March 22, 2017. In a regulatory filing, ANI Technologies -- which operates Ola -- said its board has approved raising "up to USD 100 million (about Rs 670 crore) by issue of 495,526 Series 'l1' preference shares of face value INR 10 each at a price per subscription share equivalent to INR 13,521". The filing, made to the Corporate Affairs Ministry under the Companies Act, added that the rights issue was scheduled for March 23. However, it could not be immediately ascertained how much the company raised through the issue.
A query sent to Ola did not elicit any response. The filing said the objective of the issue was "to meet the growth and expansion of business and to strengthen financial position of the company". Interestingly, Ola had recently raised about Rs 1,675 crore from its Japanese investor, SoftBank. Ola, which has a presence in 110 Indian cities, has been aggressively expanding its portfolio of services. It is placing big bets on new technologies like electric vehicles to stay ahead of the competition. Uber, which operates in 29 Indian cities, has made the country one of its top priorities. After selling its China business to rival Didi, the company has sharpened its focus on strengthening its platform and expanding driver partner ecosystem in India.
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