BlaBlaCar to acquire Russian and Ukrainian online ticketing platform
Posted: 25 September 2019 | Intelligent Transport
With over 25 million members in the Russian, Ukrainian and Polish regions, BlaBlaCar aims to seize the market opportunity and help improve the experience of travellers and bus carriers alike.
In 2018, BlaBlaCar broadened its shared mobility offer beyond carpooling. The platform began integrating buses into the Russian and Ukrainian bus marketplace, working with third-party bus carriers to create value for all market participants. This is different from the strategy it adopted in western Europe where BlaBlaCar acquired Ouibus in 2018. It is now introducing its own branded bus service, BlaBlaBus, in France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany and Italy.
With 7,000 bus carriers across Russia, Ukraine and Poland, Busfor would support BlaBlaCar in retaining a pure marketplace model. The region is starting to shift to booking buses online; currently, online booking represents only 10 per cent of the region’s multi-billion bus market.
Nicolas Brusson, BlaBlaCar’s co-founder and CEO, said: “We are thrilled to join forces with a leading regional player that has strong operating results and state-of-the-art technology. By growing a multimodal bus and carpooling offer together and by accelerating the transition from offline to online travel booking in Russia and the CEE region, we can better serve bus carriers and passengers, and improve long-distance mobility across the region.”
This move is part of BlaBlaCar’s global strategy to build a multimodal transport network offering carpooling and buses on a single platform to respond to a greater diversity of passenger needs. Where buses can cover popular roads at low prices and are bookable in advance, carpooling offers a uniquely granular network connecting any destination at a low price, even at the last minute.