Car Industry

Turo expands P2P car sharing by raising $92M, acquiring Daimler's Croove

Not only did it acquire Daimler's peer-to-peer car sharing service, it also counts the automaker among its latest investors.

Turo's intent on expanding its peer-to-peer car-sharing scheme like mad, and to that end, it's made some big moves this week.

Turo announced Wednesday that it raised $92 million in Series D funding. One of the biggest investors in this round is Daimler, which also sold part of its business to Turo. Other investors include SK Holdings from South Korea and Liberty Mutual Strategic Ventures.

Along with this new influx of cash, Turo announced that it has acquired Croove. Originally a Daimler property, Croove operates in a peer-to-peer manner similar to Turo, with a focus on Europe. Part of the reason Turo sought more funding was to aid its expansion in Europe, and picking up Croove will give the company an immediate foothold in that market.

Turo CEO Andre Haddad believes P2P car sharing will be the future of car ownership for many, and he wants to get his company in front of as many eyes as possible to make that future happen.

Turo

Turo is like the Airbnb of car sharing. Owners list their vehicles for rent on Turo's website, and users can see a list of vehicles available and rent one that suits their tastes, whether it's a classic muscle car or something newer and fancier. Liberty Mutual provides insurance on all Turo cars for both host and guest as part of the two companies' partnership.

With that immediate expansion into Europe thanks to Croove, what will Turo do with that $92 million? According to Andre Haddad, Turo's CEO, it's all about methodical expansion. "We have a good, high-level sense of what we'd like to accomplish," Haddad told Roadshow in an interview. "Expect more investments in assets to get the brand out there to an increasingly mass market audience."

This will include growing the community size, as more vehicles being available on the service will translate to more potential users perusing Turo's offerings. It wants to expand to more markets and increase customer satisfaction. The company has ramped up its advertising presence on travel aggregators such as Kayak, as folks interested in booking trips will often need a car, and Turo provides a level of variety that rental car companies can lack.

That seems like a whole lot to do at once, and Haddad agrees: "It's all about continuing to strike the right balance between expansion and quality of service. If you expand too fast, and hit too many markets, your back end (customer support, app development, etc.) won't be ready to take it on. The back-end services need to be able to cope with the influx of new users."

Turo has raised $193 million to date.