Since launching Getaround at TechCrunch Disrupt New York in 2011, the car-sharing startup has expanded to over 90 cities and, more recently, raised a massive $325 million round of funding led by SoftBank. With the company in a good place and its co-founder and CMO Jessica Scorpio “really happy with where things are,” she told TechCrunch, it’s time for her to take some time off, leave her day-to-day role at the company and move into a role on the board of directors.
In addition to serving on Getaround’s board of directors, Scorpio says she’ll join some other boards and likely do some more angel investing. Meanwhile, Getaround hired five people to join its executive team. Those roles entail a VP of People and Culture, VP of Marketing, General Counsel, VP and GM of Conveyance.
“Today, we are well on our way to realizing the vision that Jessica, Elliot and I set out to achieve years ago,” Getaround CEO Sam Zaid wrote in a blog post. “We have Jessica to thank, in large part, for how far we’ve come, and I’m excited to pass her torch to a world-class executive team.”
Since Getaround’s launch in 2011, a number of competitors have entered the car rental market. General Motors’ Maven, for example, lets people rent relatively new cars by the hour, while Turo offers a more Getaround-like peer-to-peer rental platform. In April, Turo raised $12 million following a $92 million fundraising round earlier in the year. Still, Getaround was most attractive to SoftBank.
“As we saw the space early on, we knew this would be a big market,” she said. “We took a long-term perspective in building technology that would create behavior change, while also tee-ing up the market for self-driving cars and a platform for sharing cars in that future.”
As a car owner, you can list your vehicle for on-demand rentals via Getaround. After you list it, Getaround installs its Connect hardware, which allows renters to locate and unlock your car using the Getaround mobile app. For extra peace of mind for the car owner, the Connect also features GPS tracking, tamper detection and engine lock.
Getaround also has deals in place with brands like Audi and Ford to further incentivize people to share their cars. In 2016, Getaround teamed up with Toyota to enable people to purchase cars that are pre-installed with Getaround connectivity. Earlier this month, Getaround expanded its partnership with Uber to cover four more cities. Dubbed Uber Rent, the platform taps into Getaround’s existing marketplace of cars that are available for instant rentals.
“I’m excited to be involved at the board level,” she said. “We have a lot of exciting plans and will continue innovating on what products we offer, going to more markets, expanding internationally and continuing value-add partnerships.”