Berlin-based Ridesharing Platform Bliq Closes €2 Million Seed Funding Round
– Bliq Ride provides a single app to integrate all ridesharing platforms, allowing drivers to optimise all of their transport and delivery orders. Uber, Free Now, Bolt, and Ola are already integrated into the platform.
– Amplifier Ventures and Space Capital led the funding round, with Atlantic Labs following on their pre-Seed investment.
– Bliq will use the capital to drive its European expansion and further develop the functional scope of Bliq Ride.
– Bliq Ride uses computer vision on the Edge to improve driver safety and gives users a competitive edge through their use of AI to find passenger hotspots
Berlin, November 12, 2020. The mobility software startup Bliq closed a heavily oversubscribed seed funding round of two million Euros. The Berlin-based investor Amplifier Ventures led the round with New York-based Space Capital; Atlantic Labs, Proeza Ventures, Revel and, and the angel investor Andreas Kupke also participated in the round. The Bliq Ride app aids self-employed drivers (so-called gig workers) in the organisation of their rides and displays all ridesharing providers in one app. The new funding will go towards Bliq’s European expansion and further develop the functional scope of Bliq Ride.
Bliq has been active in the German market since 2018 and has so far offered its Bliq Ride service in Cologne, Berlin, and Munich. Bliq’s business model is based on the growing alternative transport industry, where providers such as Uber, Free Now, and Bolt place orders with independent drivers.
The average ridesharing driver covers 10-20 times as many kilometres per day as a normal car driver. By harnessing the power of smartphones, the Bliq Ride Community forms a network of drivers which provide real-time data regarding the road traffic from every corner of a city. Bliq then uses edge computing and artificial intelligence to process huge amounts of current traffic and user data to deliver driver insights.
Bliq Ride displays high demand passenger regions together with areas overpopulated with other drivers to enable users to strategically position themselves and enhance their earnings. One of the most popular features is payment verification which automatically sends a message to the provider and recoups driver earnings in the case of disparities. Registered drivers can also use an in-app chat feature to share information and real-time road obstacles.
“Until recently, innovations in urban mobility have always focused on the end-user. The workers, the drivers who work every day for many of these services, have been left out. With Bliq, we are making it easier for drivers to do their daily work and ensure greater equality in a market dominated by a few powerful players. We are excited to use this investment to expand our services to drivers outside of Germany,” says Julian Glaab, CEO of Bliq.
In May 2019, the Chinese ride-hailing service Didi Chuxing had around 21 million drivers worldwide, while the ridesharing pioneer Uber employed around 3.9 million drivers at the time. The ride-hailing market is massive but the working conditions of millions of gig workers in the transport industry are determined by a handful of companies that treat them as a cost factor and try to encourage platform loyalty. As a result, drivers are often at a disadvantage and have to spend most of their working time waiting for new services, often earning far below the minimum wage.
“Bliq Ride levels the playing field for gig workers by providing them with access to more information and allowing them to secure the most lucrative business from different providers within the one app,” says Siobhan Brewster, Partner at Amplifier Ventures. “Bliq is building a powerful productivity tool whilst generating incredibly useful street-level intelligence. We are excited to support them on this journey and on their mission to empower disenfranchised rideshare drivers.”
Bliq helps gig workers in the transport industry to automate the organisation of their daily work. The “Bliq Ride” app allows registered drivers to accept or reject orders from multiple platforms. Bliq was founded in 2018 by Julian Glaab (CEO), Johannes Riedel (COO) and Torgen Hauschild (CTO). The company is based in Berlin and currently employs 17 people.
About Amplifier Ventures
Amplifier Ventures is a Berlin-based venture capital fund that invests at Seed and Series A in logistics and mobility tech. Established in 2016 by Christian Oldendorff, Amplifier was founded on the belief that the supply chain is an interconnected ecosystem with enormous potential for transformation. As a specialist fund, Amplifier leverages its deep domain expertise and its vast network of industry partners to support founders. Portfolio companies currently include Nautilus Labs, Mercado, Humanising Autonomy and Micropsi Industries.
About Space Capital
Space Capital is a seed-stage venture capital firm investing in the space economy, specifically focused on unlocking the value in space technology stacks such as GPS, geospatial intelligence, and communications. Space Capital actively invests out of their third fund and manage over $60 million in assets.
About Proeza Ventures
Based in Monterrey, Mexico, and Houston, Texas, Proeza Ventures is a venture capital firm investing exclusively in the mobility space. P.V is looking to partner with ambitious and visionary founders transforming the way in which we think about mobility pushing for more efficient, safety-focused and environmentally friendly solutions. P.V is backed by the Proeza Group, a portfolio management company which also owns Metalsa. P.V invests in industrial tech, smart components, new vehicles, MaaS and digital data services.
About Atlantic Labs
Atlantic Labs, founded in 2013 by Christophe Maire, is an early-stage venture capital investment fund that is based in Berlin, Germany. They seek to back mission driven founders as early as possible, and help them build world leading companies. They are currently active in areas including Digital Health, Future of Work, AI/Machine Learning, Mobility, Industrial Automation, Fintech, Proptech, and Community.