Saudi wealth fund backs Uber with mammoth $3.5bn investment

By John Glenday | Reporter

June 2, 2016 | 1 min read

Uber has received a $3.5bn vote of confidence after being targeted for future growth by by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund with managing director Yasir al-Rumayyan taking a seat on Uber’s board.

The windfall is set to power a significant expansion of the taxi service across the Middle East, particularly in Saudi Arabia itself where there is strong demand from women (who are not allowed to drive under strict religious laws).

An estimated 80 per cent of all Uber users in the desert kingdom are women and $250m will now be spent by Uber to boost its reach further.

Uber has gone from strength to strength in recent months and is now valued at $62.5bn with Toyota striking a partnership deal to supply vehicles and develop app technology.

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