SAYONI BHADURI – New Delhi
Car rental company Savaari Car Rentals is planning to expand its reach to ten new cities – Cuttack, Jammu, Jalandhar, Daman, Kumarakom, Tirupati, Bagdogra, Darjeeling, Allapuzha and Daman & Diu. Gaurav Aggarwal, founder and CEO, Savaari Car Rentals said that the aim is to create maximum reach and greater visibility across the country. Launched in the year 2006, Savaari Car Rentals currently services 60 cities across the country with has established a network of 158 vendors. “We have more than three thousand taxis in our fleet,” added Aggarwal. To develop the business further, the company is looking at developing a special platform for smaller travel agents. “We want to capture the business potential that lies with tens of thousands of travel agents who are catering to customers locally. We are building a special platform to enable them to book quality car rentals across India. We firmly believe this will add a good revenue stream to these agents and will allow Savaari to reach out to a wide customer base very efficiently,” he added.
Explaining their business model Aggarwal said, “At the front end, we are a car rental company to the end customer. So, right from the point that customer gets in touch with us to the point that the customer gets billed, the customer only interacts with Savaari’s processes and standards.” At the back end, they have opted for an asset-light model where they aggregate local vendors to provide services to the customers. “We have done this for reasons like the local context that is required in running these kinds of businesses. We have set high standards on who can join our network. We use the local vendors as building blocks and have built processes on top to control the customer experience with the car and ensure that they get the same quality each time and in any of the 60 cities that we provide our services in,” he added. The rates are agreed upon with the vendors and then a markup is added based on elements like costs, demand and supply within that city, competitive landscape.
“We used Search Engine Optimization (SEO) to acquire our retail customers during the initial years and we also used to do Search Engine Marketing (SEM) during peak seasons then to attain visibility. We have effectively used inside sales, in order to reach out to the corporate,” said Aggarwal explaining their marketing initiatives. He added that for retail customers, they are continuing to use a mix of SEM (with increased spends), SEO, newsletters and re-targeting. “The primary goal for the next two years is to scale our business by creating right awareness about Savaari and the advantages that we bring to both our corporate and retail customers. We are also building technology solutions which will help us scale and provide our customers with even better service and convenience,” he added.
The company launched with seed money of Rs 55,000 in 2006 in March 2012, Savaari secured series A funding of `five crore from Inventus Capital Partners. Aggarwal said, “The money will help us to create awareness about Savaari and its offering to scale and to build the right technology solution to achieve the scale.”