Hertz has announced an investment in EV rental company UFODRIVE as part of its transition to electric vehicles.
UFODRIVE is an all-digital, all-electric car rental service controlled from an app, which raised $19 million in Series A funding, co-led by Hertz and Certares, in partnership with Knighthead Capital, along with participation from existing shareholders
The partnership builds on Hertz’s announcement in October 2021 that the company is investing in a fleet of Teslas – with a commitment to offer the largest electric vehicle rental fleet in North America and to grow its EV fleet globally. Hertz also announced an exclusive partnership with Uber to make Tesla electric vehicles available for drivers to rent when using the Uber network.
Mark Fields, Hertz interim CEO, said: “Our partnership with UFODRIVE is yet another major step in Hertz becoming an essential component of the modern mobility ecosystem.
“Together, we will pilot ways to make renting an EV even easier using UFODRIVE’s digital platforms for both the rental experience and fleet management. For customers, this partnership will help us create the future rental car experience that is all-digital and EV-centric.”
Using its advanced eMobility SaaS Platform, UFODRIVE delivers a two-minute ‘arrive and drive’ entirely digital EV customer experience, with lower energy costs, better charging and optimal fleet utilization using advanced AI tools.
Following successful live testing in 2021, Hertz aims to deploy UFODRIVE’S digital rental and fleet management technology to enhance its global EV fleet operations. Starting with Hertz’s key partners in the U.S. and Europe, this will offer a fully digital rental experience, charge point wayfinding, touchless smartphone access and online customer support with live telematics using UFODRIVE’s SaaS platform.
UFODRIVE will use the additional capital to accelerate product development and to expand globally, with a focus on the U.S. market.
“Born from a vision to deliver what we call ‘Radically Better Car Rental,’ this investment is a major validation of that dream,” said Aidan McClean, UFODRIVE CEO. “We are proud that we are helping to accelerate the transition to zero-emissions mobility, and our investors see the opportunity ahead. We pioneered and are now the premier operating system for electric fleets and already service a growing list of high-profile mobility companies.”