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Contxto – Intercity transport in Brazil is on track to reach a whole new level of usability next year. Following SoftBank’s recent US$110 million investment in MadeiraMadeira, the latest Latin American startup to receive the bank’s good blessings is Buser.
The Brazilian mobility startup recently wrapped up an undisclosed Series B funding round. Funds will reportedly go towards marketing to attract new partnerships. Other participating investors included Monashees, Valor Capital, Canary and Grupo Globo.
As transport woes continue to be a big business opportunity for Latin American startups, Buser links bus travelers to lower fares through its booking platform. With plenty of affiliated partners, users have many options in choosing the most affordable provider.
Business model for the occasional traveler
While the Brazilian market has its fair share of traveling management systems such as ClickBus and Click Fretado, what sets Buser apart is its primary focus on the more “occasional” traveler. Through the platform, users can save around 50 percent per ticket when they travel in between cities.
To monetize, Buser’s charges partners a commission ranging from 20 to 35 percent for travelers that booked their trip through the system.
Big growth in little time
Founded in 2017 by Abritta and his friend, Marcelo Vasconcelos, in early 2018 Buser closed its seed funding round. Investors included Canary, Yellow Ventures and Estudar Alumni Partner Foundation.
Wanting to join the bandwagon, Valor Capital, Monashees and Canary Funds also facilitated a Series A round for Buser in November 2018.
According to SoftBank, within the first nine months of 2019 alone, Buser has grown an impressive 1,500 percent. So far, there’s no sign that it’ll be stopping anytime soon.
Expansion plans for 2020
As it currently stands, Buser has managed trips for over 250,000 passengers throughout 50 Brazilian cities. On a daily basis, it handles on average 3,000 trips. Joining them in this effort are 40 partnering bus companies and a fleet of over 100 vehicles.
However, there’s still plenty of room to grow operations.
“Our objective is to reach 200 cities in 20 states within the next 12 months,” said Abritta. “We’ll open 100 direct jobs and over 5,000 indirect jobs. Eventually, we’ll also achieve 30,000 daily trips. This will save users over R$500 million (around US$122.4 million) by booking with us.”
Another goal for Buser is to link its system to other travel apps, such as Uber. This way, it can offer a more seamless traveling experience. These are ambitious goals, but without a doubt, this recent Series B investment is a step in the right direction.