The car-sharing effort, which provides customers with access to new vehicles on-demand based on an hourly fee, has enabled General Motors to build an entire end-to-end service in just seven months.
GM jumped into the ride-hailing market in January with the acquisition of Sidecar.
The acquisition came shortly after Sidecar shuttered its app-based ridesharing and delivery service in December last year.
“This is the end of the road for the Sidecar ride and delivery service, but it’s by no means the end of the journey for the company,” Sidecar CEO and Cofounder Sunil Paul said in a Medium post in December. “We are the innovation leader in ridesharing, despite a significant capital disadvantage, continually rolling out new products that set the bar for others to follow.”
Sources told Bloomberg that GM wrote a check valued at under $39 million, the total that Sidecar had raised from investors. With the completion of the acquisition, GM absorbed Sidecar’s technology, a portion of its employees and other assets.
GM plugged the Sidecar team into developing its driverless ridesharing car service, which it is developing in collaboration with Lyft — a project in which it recently invested $500 million.
Maven Chief Operating Officer Dan Grossman, who spent six years at Zipcar, told TechCrunch that what initially attracted him to the opportunity at GM was the automaker’s determination to create a full-service car-sharing effort.
“I left our initial meetings really thinking that they were serious, that they wanted to start a brand from the ground up versus acquiring an existing brand,” Grossman explained. “And they wanted to bring all this great innovation, both on the technology side and on the vehicle side, that they thought would make a difference, not just in the U.S. but globally.”