The new line of credit will be used for VMAC’s incoming projects, including expanding its mobility-as-a-service business into “various municipalities” across the U.S., Co-Owner and Chief Operating Officer Grant Stark, told Auto Finance News. MBFS serves as the primary financier for VMAC’s fleet.
Currently, the startup operates in Arlington, Texas; Los Angeles; New York; and West Sacramento, Calif. Salt Lake City will be deployed in the near term, Stark said. The company’s inventory consists of “hundreds” of Mercedes Metris midsized vans, Stark added.
VMAC, which launched in 2014 in New York City, is the vehicle provider of Via Transportation, a smartphone-based app where consumers can book a rideshare vehicle at a $3 flat per-trip fee. The difference between Via and other rideshare companies, like Uber or Lyft, is that VMAC owns the vehicles Via uses for its service. Also, cities work with Via and VMAC to provide rideshare services for consumers in a specific geographical radius. The company aims to provide a technology-driven alternative to public transportation.
VMAC has been partnered with MBFS and Daimler since early 2015, Stark said, noting that MBFS has provided funding in the past and the $5 million credit line is VMAC’s first public announcement. “We retain various funding sources that are not currently public,” Stark said.
MBFS has had a focus on mobility-as-a-service as it partners with brands outside its own. The captive’s parent, Daimler AG, partnered with BMW Group in a $1.1 billion ride-hailing joint venture earlier this year.
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