Blacklane to expand following $45m investment

Blacklane to expand following $45m investment

Chauffeur drive service Blacklane plans expansion after securing its largest investment to date.

The Series D round is believed to be worth up to $45 million and will fund new cities, global airport concierge services and product innovation.

UAE-based automotive, hospitality and travel, real estate and industrial conglomerate ALFAHIM has come on board as a new investor.

Existing investors Daimler AG, through subsidiary Daimler Mobility Services, and btov Partners also contributed.

The investment will see the introduction of Blacklane Premium Airport Services & Solutions (Blacklane PASS) worldwide.

Travellers will be able to book curbside and planeside meet-and-greet, connecting flight assistance and airport lounge services sourced following the acquisition of global airport concierge services platform Solve in October.

Blacklane, established six years ago, plans to increase its presence tis year to reach more than 300 cities, with major growth across the Middle East and Africa.

Product improvements will include continuous innovation of Blacklane’s booking and management channels as well as further integrations with new travel companies. Current partners include Amadeus, Asia Miles, Expedia, Finnair, Hertz and Miles & More.

Co-founder and chief executive Jens Wohltorf said: “The most stressful part of a trip is the time between your front door and accessing the airplane.

“Our premium services and global reliability turn anxiety into assurance and concern into comfort.

“This investment accelerates Blacklane’s ability to bring end-to-end peace of mind onto the road and into airports around the world.”

Ahmed AJ Al Fahim, chairman of ALFAHIM, said: “Combining our nationwide expertise and diversity with Blacklane’s reinvention of the professional driver industry for the benefit of travellers, drivers and partners, will bring unequivocal innovative luxury services to the Middle East and Africa.

“Blacklane’s ambition and brand strength make it the ideal company to add to our global portfolio.”

Blacklane chairman Jochen Gutbrod, a partner at btov Partners, added: “Blacklane made professional driver services accessible to the mass travel market, and will do the same for airport concierge services. This is huge untapped opportunity for Blacklane and its partners.”

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