Careem Logo as of 2016
|Privately held company|
|Industry||Technology, transportation network company|
Mudassir Sheikha |
|100+ cities in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia|
|Services||Taxicab, Vehicle for hire|
Careem is a transportation network company based in Dubai, with operations in over 100 cities in 14 countries in the Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia. The company is valued at around $1.2 billion as of 2017.
Careem was co-founded by Mudassir Sheikha and Magnus Olsson, who had both worked as management consultants at McKinsey & Company  It started operating in July 2012 as a website-based service for corporate car bookings, and evolved to become a transportation network company with car hire for everyday use.
In 2015, the company acquired a Saudi-based home delivery service company and the founder, Abdulla Elyas joined Careem. In 2017, the company announced a program to extend maternity leave and hire more women.
In June 2017 Careem launched operations in Palestine as part of a commitment to create one million jobs in the Middle East and North Africa region by the end of 2018.In January 2018 they became the first ride-hailing service to launch in Baghdad.
It was announced in February, 2018 that Careem has acquired RoundMenu, a restaurant listing and food ordering platform that operates across the Arab world. In August 2018 Careem said they would be launching bus services, starting with cities in Egypt.
Careem has raised funding of US$421.7 million to date. It received seed money of US$1.7 million in a round led by STC Ventures in 2013. In 2014, it received funding of US$10 million in a Series B round led by Al Tayyar Travel Group and STC Ventures.
In November 2015, Careem announced a Series C round investment of US$60 million led by The Abraaj Group. In October 2016, the company reached an agreement with regulators in Dubai whereby customers are able to book all taxicabs and limousines operating in Dubai via the Careem mobile app. In December 2016, the company raised US$350 million in a Series D round, based on a $1 billion valuation for the company. Saudi Telecom in this funding round invested in a 10% stake in Careem.
In Pakistan, Careem employs women drivers, and 30 percent of its riders are women. Women are also employed as drivers in Egypt and Jordan. In Saudi Arabia, women make up 80 percent of ride-hailing companies' customers. Careem is planning to have a female workforce of 20,000 by the year 2020.In Saudi Arabia, Careem and Uber have started recruiting women, as part of the Saudi Women to drive movement. Women are going to start driving on 24 June 2018, and Uber and Careem women drivers can start working on the same day.
Uber and Careem faced heavy criticism in Egypt at the beginning of 2016 by local taxi drivers for operating without official taxi licenses. Taxi drivers organized several protests and sit-ins demanding that the Egyptian government intervene to halt the activities of the TNCs. A committee was organized by the Egyptian government to assess the complaints of the protesting taxi drivers and standardize taxi services in Egypt. They ruled in favor of the TNCs, ensuring that they can operate legally and provided legal protection for the TNC drivers who had been facing attacks by both state police and angry taxi drivers.
In January, 2018, Careem discovered data on more than 14 million riders and 558,800 drivers were breached. The company waited until late April, 2018, to disclose this breach because they "wanted to make sure we had the most accurate information before notifying people". According to investigations conducted by the company, there was no initial evidence of fraud or misuse.
Careem has been a supporter of Cricket for a Cause for the past two years and has supported the leagues efforts to raise funds for children in developing nations.
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