By John Lee.
South African mobile phone company MTN Group has agreed to invest $22 million in Snapp.ir, Iran’s first cab-hailing smartphone app.
Snapp CEO Shahram Shahkar informed Bloomberg that the funds would be used to allow the company to expand quickly from Tehran into other cities.
He said it has grown to about 500,000 subscribers and 10,000 drivers since it started two years ago as Iran’s answer to Uber.
Snapp is owned by Iran Internet Group, which operates and invests in startup and e-commerce companies, including retailer Bamilo and food delivery service ZoodFood.
MTN is currently having difficulty repatriating $1.1 billion from Iran following the lifting of U.S.-led economic sanctions.
It also owns 49 percent of Iran’s second-biggest telecommunications provider, IranCell.