Carsharing Platform, Turo, Raises $250M And Becomes A Unicorn

Turo, a car-sharing startup, has raised $250 million from IAC in a Series E funding round, which puts the company’s valuation at above a billion dollars, according to reports.

IAC is an internet media company that previously owned and OkCupid. The funding round brings the company’s total amount raised to $450 million since the company’s inception in 2009, when it was called Relay Rides.

Turo will use the money to expand and help with customer relations.

Turo CEO Andre Haddad said in a blog post that it wants to follow its mission of “putting the world’s one billion cars to better use, and our vision that wherever in the world you are, you can find the perfect vehicle for your next adventure from a trusted Turo host.”

IAC and Turo teamed up so it can help Turo reach “household name” status. Turo has about 400,000 cars available on its platform, and more than 10 million both listing and renting.

The company says it’s been growing rapidly, double in the last two years and 8 times in international markets like Germany and the United Kingdom.

PYMNTS CEO Karen Webster recently spoke with Michelle Peacock, vice president and head of government relations at Turo, about the enterprise.

“The world of traditional car rentals, generally speaking, doesn’t present a consumer with the world’s greatest experience,” Webster wrote. “One can pick the general category of their rental car, but the specific make and model is going to be a mystery until they go pick it up. Some things, they can specify, like a bike rack or car seat. Other — fairly obvious — things, like whether a car has hands-free Bluetooth capabilities, remain a mystery.”

Peacock agreed with that sentiment.

“I mean, renting a car is usually a terrible experience all the way around. You get to stand in a long line, wait your turn and then you get to accept whatever car they hand you,”  Peacock said.

This is why more and more people are turning to peer-to-peer (P2P) alternatives like Turo, Webster wrote.