Naspers invests R42m in startup to improve public transport for commuters

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Naspers has announced a R42 million investment ina  Cape Town-founded mobility technology company Photo: Getty Images
Naspers has announced a R42 million investment ina Cape Town-founded mobility technology company Photo: Getty Images

Internet giant Naspers* has invested R42 million in a Cape Town-founded mobility technology company, WhereIsMyTransport, which aims to make it easier for commuters to use public transport.

In a statement issued on Monday, Naspers said the investment is part of a R201 million funding round led by Naspers Foundry, Cathay AfricInvest Innovation Fund, and SBI Investment.

Naspers Foundry is the group's startup funding initiative, with a focus on South African technology entrepreneurs.

"WhereIsMyTransport is a mobility technology company that maps formal and informal public transport networks and uses this data and technology to improve the public transport experience, making the public commute more reliable, predictable, safe, inclusive and accessible for millions of people in highly populated megacities," the statement read.

The startup provides commuters in Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia and Latin America with real-time public transport network alerts. This is aimed at improving their mobility and reducing the time they spend commuting, according to Naspers.

The startup's goal is to become a central source of "accurate and reliable" public transport data for high-growth markets, according to WhereIsMyTransport CEO Devin de Vries.

WhereIsMyTransport licences mobility datasets to governments, development finance institutions, NGOs and operators, among others. Its clients in South Africa include the Gautrain in Johannesburg and Transport for Cape Town. It launched Rumbo in Mexico City in November 2020. The app provides network information for its customers in the Latin America market.

"WhereIsMyTransport has a strong track record of developing the best-in-class technology in improving the daily commutes of people across the world.

"The mobility technology company is a great addition to the Naspers Foundry investment portfolio and we look forward to working with the WhereIsMyTransport team as they take their business to the next level," said Naspers Foundry head, Fabian Whate.

*Fin24 is part of Media24, a subsidiary of Naspers.

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