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BENGALURU : ANI Technologies Ltd, the parent of Ola Cabs, said on Tuesday it has acquired geo-analytics technology platform GeoSpoc for an undisclosed sum as it looks to enhance geospatial services and capabilities.

The acquisition will help platforms such as Ola Cabs and Ola Electric to convert satellite imagery into real-time maps as well as 3D, high-definition (HD) and vector maps, Ola founder and chief executive officer Bhavish Aggarwal said in a blogpost.

This will help the cab aggregator provide a better understanding of road quality, as well as improvements such as avoiding poorly-lit streets at night for safety, even if it is a faster route.

With the acquisition, GeoSpoc’s investors will be exiting the startup, and its team will be joining Ola.

In 2018, Ola had acquired Ridlr, owned by Birds Eye Systems Pvt. Ltd, to improve its navigation technology.

“Multi-modal transportation options will need geospatial intelligence to understand the unique benefits of each option and provide suggestions accordingly. Maps will need to consider a 3D view of the world as aerial mobility models such as drones become more mainstream. (Further) autonomous driving will need high-definition and 3D maps, which will offer superior visualization and dynamic real-time updates based on road, traffic and weather conditions," said Aggarwal.

“We have the data and the expertise to build this (better public transportation) utilizing our deep understanding of consumer movements as well as our massive network of two-, three- and four-wheelers that provide unprecedented geospatial details. We can layer this data with new sources such as satellite imagery and visual feeds from our network on the ground to build ‘living maps’ that embody the changing landscape of our world," he added.

Ola has made close to eight acquisitions so far to build its ecosystem of products ranging from transport to foodtech and fintech, according to data from market research platform Traxcn.

Past acquisitions include car rental aggregator TaxiForSure, food ordering and delivery platform Foodpanda and mobile wallet solution Zipcash.

Mint had recently reported that Ola Cabs has started hiring investment bankers and lawyers to work on its plans for an initial public offering (IPO) that could see the company raise $1.5-2 billion. Shortlisted banks include Kotak Mahindra Capital, Citigroup and Morgan Stanley.

The company is expected to file its draft papers for the IPO this month ahead of its planned public debut early next year.

Last month, Temasek Holdings and Warburg Pincus invested $500 million in ANI Technologies. Aggarwal also participated in the round. He currently owns a 7.9% stake in the 11-year-old company, according to Tracxn.

Last week, Ola Electric raised more than $200 million in a funding round led by SoftBank and Falcon Edge at a valuation of $3 billion.

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