​Ingogo gears up for IPO with new appointments

Ingogo has made two new appointments to its team in preparation for its plans to list on the ASX, expand to new cities, and launch new products.

Australian taxi app and mobile payments provider Ingogo has announced that it is preparing to list on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) this year, and plans to target new cities in Australia.

Currently operating in Sydney and Melbourne, Ingogo founder Hamish Petrie said the company plans to go live in Brisbane, Adelaide, and Perth.

He added that the company is preparing to list on the ASX, and said the company's latest appointment of Trent Jerome as chief financial officer will assist with the process. Jerome has held roles with AAPT, PowerTel, and Salmat.

"Our new CFO Mr Jerome has a solid background with public companies and vast IPO experience, which is of great value to us. With a focus on change management and business integration, he has the great ability to streamline business operations, which will increase efficiency and bottom-line profit, through commercial strategies," he said.

Petrie continued: "Listing on the ASX is the right next step for ingogo however it will take a lot of planning, which is what we are doing this year. It's a big year for ingogo as we make these plans and we're also looking to launch our technology product for SMEs and to expand into other cities."

The company initially signalled at the end of 2013 that it was going to list on the ASX during 2014, after picking up an additional AU$3.4 million in venture capital funding.

Ingogo also announced an AU$9 million funding round in October, which took its total raised to AU$16.2 million.

Meanwhile, Craig Hopper's appointment as chief commercial officer will help lead the company's plans for a nationwide expansion, Petrie said. Hopper spent the last 10 years with GE Capital in Australia and Europe, and has previously worked for SingTel Optus.

Petrie said in 2015 that the company will also be looking to launch new products. Ingogo announced a partnership last year with Xero to develop a portable payment and accounting platform for small businesses.

The company is also already in the mobile payments market since introducing its wireless terminals as an alternative for taxi drivers using the Cabcharge system.

Ingogo was previously accused by the Australian Taxi Industry Association (ATIA) for playing a part in creating an unfair playing field in the taxi service industry. The ATIA had claimed that Ingogo was one of the companies that state governments were failing to regulate when it came to compliance with taxi dispatch.

Uber, another disruptor of the taxi industry, reportedly raised $1.6 billion in convertible debt from Goldman Sachs' wealth management clients. It plans to roll out its service to more cities and invest in research and development for improving safety, Bloomberg reported.

The car-sharing service is also reportedly in talks to raise an additional $600 million from hedge funds and international strategic investors. If successful, the funds will add to the $4 billion in funding the company has already raised, both in convertible debt and cash, since it was founded in 2009.