Well, it’s official — Uber has confirmed that it raised $258 million in new funding and added a couple of new members to its board of directors to help move it forward. In a blog post that appeared briefly but was quickly taken down, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick confirmed that the new money came from Google Ventures and TPG.
The company plans to use the funding to move into new markets and begin marketing efforts, as well as to fight off protectionist, anti-competitive efforts, Kalanick wrote. And while the money will surely help, the backing from the new investors and board members should be equally as important.
Along with the funding, Google SVP of Corporate Development and Chief Legal Officer David Drummond will be joining the board. On Google backing, Kalanick said the company will be looking to connect strategically around product initiatives. Also, the startup will likely lean on Google for help with local governments and regulatory bodies as it expands.
TPG founding partner David Bonderman will also be joining the board. On the TPG side, Kalanick wrote that it will look to the private equity firm for some of its operations and their regulatory know-how.
Since the blog post has been taken down, here’s the text of the announcement as it first appeared:
As many of you have seen in the press today, Uber recently closed a financing round. We wanted to put out the official word to make sure the facts were clear and confirmed. This round is $258 million with proceeds to be used to expand into new markets, begin marketing efforts, and fight off protectionist, anti-competitive efforts.
The financing was led by Google Ventures with TPG Growth participating. David Drummond, Google’s SVP of Corporate Development and Chief Legal Officer will be joining the Uber board. David Bonderman, founding partner of TPG, will also be joining the board.
The numbers on this financing are fairly substantial. It is a reflection of our growth to date and continuing success. But with this new investment, expectations naturally increase and there is a new standard of excellence and accomplishment that we seek to live up to. Our vision is to build a technology company that changes transportation and logistics in urban centers around the world and this financing gives us the fuel to make that a reality.
We couldn’t be more excited to embark on the next phase of our journey with our new partners, both truly great in their respective industries. I like to talk about this combination of investors as “Bits and Atoms.”
On one end we have Google, a technology powerhouse, with billions of users on an incredibly complementary product suite ranging from Google Maps to Android to self-driving vehicles. We look to Google for the strategic connectivity to their product initiatives alongside the expertise that comes with evangelizing new technology with governments and regulatory bodies around the world.
David Drummond is our partner at Google who will help us navigate the company and provide strategic advice as our regulatory efforts follow our launches across Europe and Asia.
With TPG, we have partnered up with one of the most prolific private equity firms in the world. Why does that matter? How are they different than any of the traditional venture capital firms? It’s really simple: TPG owns and operates companies. The Uber deal is obviously very different, but their deep rolodex of operations executives and their regulatory know-how in highly regulated, “atoms”-based industries in the farthest corners of the globe is where TPG shines. David Bonderman’s vision and relationships will be invaluable to Uber as we become a global brand.
So that’s the news. I hope this clarifies what Uber is looking to do with this new funding, and sheds some light on the groundbreaking investment partnership we’ve put together for Uber’s next phase of growth.