iCarsClub, a service that allows people to rent out their cars by the hour just got a seed round of almost half a million, a little under three months since its launch.
The Singapore-based startup provides a service similar to Zipcar, except car owners rent out their own vehicles and iCarsClub doesn’t own or provide the cars. The company will install a piece of hardware in members’ vehicles, which will allow the renter to unlock the doors with a phone app. The cars are connected to a central server which sends the locking command.
iCarsClub was just launched in December, and the team is using its home state of Singapore to test the concept. The team of five have plans to quickly expand to China within the year, and are eyeing Beijing and Shanghai. It has set a target to attract 5,000 members and 1,000 cars in Singapore, and another 1,000 cars in China by end-year.
The startup was funded by Red Dot Ventures, a VC in Singapore affiliated with the government’s National Research Foundation (NRF) effort. The NRF backs investments pledged by its appointed VCs in the country, to a ratio of 85 percent for 15 percent raised by the VCs.
iCarsClub’s CEO is Eddy Zhang, and the team includes Joya Zhao Hong, Jamie Wang, Chengkun Xue and Jack Wei Liuwei.