SA ride-hailing finance startup FlexClub raises $1.2m funding

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South African startup FlexClub, which connects aspiring Uber drivers with vehicle finance, has raised a US$1.2 million seed funding round in order to expand its team and make Mexico its first overseas market.

Co-founded last year by Tinashe Ruzane and Marlon Gallardo, both former employees of Uber, and Rudolf Vavruch, FlexClub allows users to purchase vehicles which are then matched with Uber drivers who pay a weekly rental charge to the investor.

The startup has now raised US$1.2 million in a seed round led by CRE Venture Capital and also featuring Montegray Capital and Savannah Fund as it looks to build out its team and expand into new geographies.

“We’re planning to use the funding for expanding our team and investing in launching Mexico as our first LATAM market,” said Ruzane, chief executive officer (CEO) of FlexClub.

Michael Jordaan, CEO of Montegray Capital, said he was attracted to FlexClub by the concept of helping people without capital to become entrepreneurs as Uber drivers who can buy the car over time, as well as the team behind the concept.

“It is a company with possibilities in all markets where Uber operates and may also expand into other asset classes over time,” he said.

Mbwana Alliy, managing partner at Savannah Fund, said Ruzane’s experience at Uber in vehicle solutions for EMEA meant he had gained valuable insight into understanding how to best tap emerging markets.

“We also like that the company is able to tap multiple markets at once by having unique access to the Uber “data exhaust” as strong indicator of which markets have strong potential for their solution,” he said.

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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