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Car sharing company Turo is tech's latest unicorn, with a $250M IAC investment

McKenzie DeGroot
Segment Producer

There’s a new unicorn in town.

Car-sharing company Turo recently landed a $250 million cash infusion from web giant IAC (IAC)— giving the Airbnb of cars a valuation of over $1 billion. The deal also makes IAC the largest shareholder of Turo.

“We believe that there’s a huge opportunity to transform the world’s 1.5 billion cars into cars that can generate earnings for their owners while they aren’t using them,” Turo CEO Andre Haddad told Yahoo Finance’s YFi PM in a recent interview.

Capitalizing on the growing car-sharing marketplace, Turo now hosts over 10 million customers worldwide. Customers can rent cars online or through the app.

So how does it work? “Turo enables all of these car owners around the country, around the world, to monetize their cars when they’re not using them,” Haddad explained.

The CEO sees it as a platform that’s more than just helpful for consumers, but also for the car owners themselves — giving them a modest income stream. “Last year, the average host on the platform earned around $550 a month sharing their car roughly ten days a month,” he told Yahoo Finance.

“A lot of people are sharing their main cars. Often it helps them pay for their car payments,” he added.

IAC invests $250 million in car-sharing company Turo. (Courtesy: Turo)

Founded in 2010, Turo has almost 400,000 vehicles listed on its site, and generated roughly $250 million in revenue in 2018, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The car-sharing company operates in 49 states and 5,500 cities—except New York, as these rentals can’t be insured.

Haddad also stated that, when lending out your vehicle on Turo in the United States, the company provides insurance for the host through its partnership with Liberty Mutual.

“We provide the coverage that protects both the host and the guests,” the CEO said. “Your personal insurance when you’re sharing your car is not really covering that transaction,” he adds.

Whether Turo will follow in the footsteps of ride-hailing companies like Uber (UBER) and Lyft (LYFT) and go public however, remains to be seen.

McKenzie DeGroot is a producer at Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter: @degrootmckenzie

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