Partnerships / Acquisitions

Uber Buys Transit Software Provider Routematch

Uber

Uber Technologies Inc. said Thursday (July 16) it has acquired Routematch, a software company that collaborates with more than 500 transit systems worldwide.

The companies declined to provide financial details of the deal.

“This acquisition brings together Uber’s expertise in on-demand, global mobility technologies with Routematch’s proven capabilities across paratransit, payments, fixed-route tools, and trip planning services,” said Uber Head of Transit David Reich and Routematch CEO Pepper Harward, in a joint statement.

Harward will remain in charge of the 170-person, 20-year-old company.

TechCrunch.com reported the acquisition signals Uber’s push to become a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) provider to public transit agencies. Routematch’s software provides vehicle tracking, trip planning, payment and tools for buses. The company serves customers in rural and suburban areas.

The companies said the merger will create innovations that make it easier for agencies to provide transportation solutions to riders, through the use of new technologies.

By mid-afternoon, Uber shares had fallen by about 1 percent. From April 1 through July 15, its shares have improved by 29 percent.

Uber said the acquisition links Uber’s expertise in on-demand, global mobility technologies with Routematch’s capabilities across transit, payments, fixed-route tools, and trip planning services.

“While we’ve made a lot of progress together, more is needed, especially during these current times,” Reich and Harward said. “Today, we’re taking a big step forward in making our shared vision a reality.”

Last month, PYMNTS reported as ridesharing was taking a hit from the pandemic, Uber was pushing into public transportation. Uber’s software will soon be managing public transportation for Marin County in the San Francisco Bay area. Uber signed a deal with county officials under which residents of Marin, population 250,000, will be able to use Uber’s app to book rides on minibuses in the city for $4 a mile.

Uber is reportedly in talks with investors to take a stake in its freight business and raise $500 million to boost it to a value of $4 billion.

An Uber spokesperson said it is not unusual for the ridesharing company to receive interest for investment in Uber Freight, but declined to comment on rumors.

Since its launch in 2017, Uber Freight has specialized in connecting truck drivers with shipping companies, acting as a broker. During the first quarter, Uber Freight’s revenue increased 57 percent to $199 million, with losses widening during that time by 121 percent, to $64 million.

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