London’s Hailo Gets $30.6M Fare from Union Square Ventures, Others

As initially reported by The  Wall Street Journal, London-based taxi app maker Hailo raised $30.6 million in a Series B round led by Union Square Ventures. Other investors participating in the round include Virgin Group founder Sir Richard Branson, Phenomen Ventures, teleco KDDI in Tokyo, Red Swan Ventures, Felicis Ventures, and prior investors.

A version of Hailo’s app for cab drivers lets them keep in touch with each other while the app for pedestrians can be used, in select cities, to hail taxis. Hailo, which has its U.S. headquarters in New York, previously raised $20 million from investors that include Accel Partners, Atomico Ventures, and Wellington Partners.

Competition is on the rise among developers of hailing apps such as San Francisco’s Uber, whose service lets users request taxis and black cars, and Israel’s GetTaxi, which set up its U.S. headquarters in New York last year.

According to a press release issued Tuesday by Hailo, the company hired Starbucks veteran Tom Barr as president of its U.S. operations.

Hailo’s network for taxi drivers is available in New York, Boston, and Chicago, and abroad in Dublin, Toronto, Barcelona, Tokyo, and Madrid. The taxi hailing service is available in Boston, London, Toronto, and Chicago, according to a company spokesman. New York’s Taxi & Limousine Commission approved a pilot program for the hailing service that is expected to start this quarter for yellow cabs in the city.

João-Pierre S. Ruth is the editor of Xconomy New York. He can be reached at jpruth@xconomy.com and followed on Twitter @jpruth. Follow @jpruth

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