Moovit Raises $50 Million From Nokia, BMW

Post-funding company valuation of $300 million for public transit navigation app is highest of its kind for an Israeli company.

Eliahu Hershkovitz

Israeli public transit navigation app Moovit has wrapped up a $50 million financing round at a post-funding company valuation of $300 million, the company reported Wednesday. The valuation is the highest of its kind for an Israeli company.

Among the funders in this third round were the financing arm of BMW, called BMW i Ventures, and Nokia Growth Partners.

“Since the completion of the second funding round, we have seen accelerated growth in the markets in which we operate,” Moovit’s CEO Nir Erez said. Now is the time, he said, to make the service available to more users.

The Nes Tziona-based company reported that it now has 15 million users in more than 500 cities around the world, and that its user base has doubled in the past six months.

In the past year, the company has tripled its workforce to 65, most of whom are at its Nes Tziona headquarters. The company also has an office in San Francisco.

Valuation for high-tech companies around the world have gone through the roof recently. Last June Uber Technologies, the ride sharing app developer, raised funds at a company valuation of $17 billion.

Other investors in the Moovit funding round include French transportation group Keolis, the Bernard Arnault Group and Vaizra Investments. Existing investors Sequoia Capital and Israel’s BRM Group and Gemini Partners also participated.

Moovit has raised $81.5 million since it was founded in 2011. The firm still does not, however, have a revenue stream.

The app does for bus and train passengers what the Israeli navigation app Waze, which Google bought for $966 million in 2013, does for drivers. Both rely on crowdsourced information from users to provide real-time data, such as the location of roadworks or accidents that could slow travel time.

Moovit introduced its app for iPhone and Android smartphones in Israel in 2012 and has since expanded to 40 countries in North America, South America and Europe. It has recently expanded to Asia as well. Most of its users are said to be under 45 years old.

The company was founded by Yaron Evron, a transportation engineer who owned a transportation planning firm, and Roy Bick, the company’s chief technology officer, who had prior experience in the high-tech sector.