Estonia-founded Planet42 is a car subscription startup that addresses transport inequality with a socially inclusive subscription model.
On Wednesday, February 22, Planet42 announced that it has raised $100M (approximately €94M) in combined equity and debt funding.
Out of the total, a $15M (approximately €14M) equity round was co-led by Naspers and ARS Holdings, with participation from existing and new shareholders, including Rivonia Road Capital, who also provided a $75M (approximately €70M) credit facility.
Besides, private investors contributed a further $10M (approximately €9.4M) in debt financing.
Planet42 says it will use the capital to scale its business and achieve the goal of providing one million cars worldwide.
Plant42 previously raised $6M (approximately €5.6M) in equity and $24M (approximately €22.6M) in debt financing.
To date, Planet42 has raised $150M (approximately €141M) in combined equity and debt funding from investors such as Naspers, Change Ventures, Startup Wise Guys, Martin Villig (Bolt), Ragnar Sass (Pipedrive), and Andrew Rolfe as well as lenders such as Rivonia Road Capital.
Started as CarGet
Marten Orgna and Eerik Oja founded the company as CarGet in 2017 to service South Africa, a market well-known to co-founder and CFO Marten Orgna, who ran African Investments for Trigon Capital.
The company was born in Estonia and has operations in South Africa and Mexico.
Grant Wing, South Africa Managing Director and Country Manager of Planet42 says, “Planet42 is committed to breaking down the barriers that South Africans face in accessing cars. The struggle for credit, particularly for car finance, has been an ongoing challenge for millions of people in the country, even a decade ago, when the economy was arguably in better shape, and we understand the significant impact that this has on people’s lives.”
“Essentially, no car equals lower standards of living and, in many cases, no income at all. Our mission is to empower people to create a brighter future for themselves, and we are proud to be a part of their journey towards financial inclusion and success,” says Wing.
Addressing transport inequality
According to a report from United Nations, only 50 per cent of the global urban population has adequate access to public transport.
Despite having a bank account and a steady salary, wage earners in developing markets are unable to obtain financing from traditional financial institutions to own automobiles, adds the report.
Planet42 is addressing transport inequality with a socially inclusive subscription model.
Socially inclusive car subscription
Using proprietary scoring algorithms and data science, the company assesses a customer’s risk level and generates an offer to acquire a car from a car dealership of their choice.
Planet42 claims that in South Africa, they have added nearly 1,000 dealerships to its network.
Planet42 buys the customer’s chosen car and rents it out to them on a subscription basis.
Of the customers served to date, “89 per cent would not have been able to access a personal vehicle through other means,” claims the company.
In 2021, Planet42 expanded its service in Mexico, with over 250 cars already delivered to customers. In the same year, Planet42 has been certified as a CarbonNeutral company by Climate Impact Partners, the leading experts on carbon neutrality and climate finance.
“I’m thrilled to support Planet42 as they expand worldwide and improve the lives of thousands of individuals who face limited access to private transportation, which can significantly impact their quality of life and opportunities,” says Andrew Rolfe, General Partner at ARS Holdings, who joins Planet42 as a member of its supervisory board.