December 15, 2021 (New York, NY) — Via, the global leader in TransitTech, today announces that the company will focus on its TransitTech business and stop providing direct-to-consumer, on-demand shared rides. This moment reflects the realization of Via’s multi-year strategy to drive global adoption of software for public transportation. The announcement comes on the heels of a Series G funding round in November that valued the company at $3.3 billion, based in large part on its TransitTech software business.
Via launched the first marketplace for on-demand shared rides in NYC in 2013. The experience as operator of a large-scale on-demand transit service, and as primary user of its own software, along with the data from tens of millions of rides, were critical for developing the algorithms and technology stack that are the foundation of the Via software platform.
In parallel, Via grew relationships with public mobility providers — cities, transit agencies, school districts, and paratransit operators — to offer technology-enabled shared transportation that improves efficiency and quality of service. Via’s track record as an operator, along with the company's familiarity with the day-to-day challenges faced by its public transit partners, helped build trust and drive growth. Today, Via has more than 500 partnerships in over 35 countries and a thriving TransitTech business that has surpassed an annual revenue run rate of $100M.
The adoption of TransitTech has been accelerated by a number of factors:
- Flexible transit — that does not adhere to fixed routes or schedules — can readily respond to changes in demand, making efficient use of resources to meet the greatest need. Unpredictable shifts in travel behavior have been magnified as communities respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- The zip code a person is born into is one of the greatest predictors of economic mobility, and car ownership is the second largest household expense for most Americans. By providing access to efficient and affordable public transportation, Via is helping reduce the need for a car, and increasing individuals’ ability to easily reach employment, healthcare, and educational opportunities.
- Transportation is the single largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions in the US. TransitTech is supplying solutions to the climate crisis by connecting riders to public transit and enabling shared mobility to meet the needs of more people, thereby reducing single-occupancy vehicle trips.
“We are incredibly proud that adoption of TransitTech solutions has become mainstream,” said Daniel Ramot and Oren Shoval, Via Co-founders. “Now more than ever it’s critical that we focus on the part of our business that creates the most benefit for the most people. TransitTech is good for communities, good for the environment, and good business. New York will always be our home, and we are thrilled to be a growing, mission-driven company that is part of the city’s technology landscape.”
Via serves communities across the US and around the world with its TransitTech solutions, including:
- Jersey City, NJ: In partnership with the City of Jersey City, Via’s platform powers Via Jersey City, an on-demand public transit service that connects residents between transit deserts in the North and South regions of the city to public transit hubs and essential destinations. 50% of riders make less than $50K a year, and the impact of the service is clear with a 78% increase in ridership since the start of the pandemic, with ridership more than 3x what it was before the onset of COVID-19.
- Wilson, NC: In rural Wilson, NC, where 22% of residents live below the poverty line, the city replaced fixed-route services with RIDE, an on-demand transit service powered by software from Via. Since launch, Wilson residents can now affordably access 64% more of the city’s jobs, hospitals, and schools.
- Milton Keynes, United Kingdom: Via launched a fully-electric, direct-to-consumer, on-demand shared ride service in Milton Keynes (UK) in 2018. The service was the first fully-electric offering of its kind in the UK, supported by funding from the Department for Transport to enable the success of equitable, low-emission on demand public transport services. Due to its positive impact, a year later, the Milton Keynes Council transitioned the service to be an integral part of the city’s public transport network.
- Luxembourg: In partnership with the Luxembourg Ministry of Mobility and Public Works, Via has deployed its cloud-based software platform to transform the way that paratransit riders and those with special needs access and experience public transport nationwide. Luxembourg paratransit and special needs public transport serves approximately 500,000 rides a year.
Via’s last day of service for individual riders in NYC and DC will be on December 20th. To support the driver community, the company is offering its NY-based driver partners a range of work opportunities, including to drive with Via TransitTech partnerships in the area and referring them to MTA access-a-ride programs. In Washington DC, Via has a number of existing partnerships with the DC government that the company is working to continue to support.
Founded in 2012, Via pioneered the TransitTech category by using new technologies to develop public mobility systems — optimizing networks of buses, shuttles, wheelchair accessible vehicles, school buses, autonomous vehicles, and electric vehicles around the globe. Building the world’s most efficient, equitable, and sustainable transportation network for all riders — including those with limited mobility, those without smartphones, and unbanked populations — Via works with its partners to lower the costs of public transit while providing transportation options that rival the convenience of a personal car, and reducing environmental impact. At the intersection of transportation and technology, Via is a visionary market leader that combines software innovation with sophisticated service design and operational expertise to fundamentally improve the way the world moves, with over 500 partnerships in more than 35 countries and counting