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Urban navigation app Citymapper raises $10m from Lovefilm and AirBnB investors

Plans to add more cities and hire new staff

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Urban transport app Citymapper has received $10 million (£5.94 million) in a funding round led by European tech start-up investor Balderton Capital.

Citymapper’s free navigation app – said to be installed on over half of the iPhones in London and one of the most downloaded apps on iTunes – aims to make it as easy as possible for users to navigate around cities.

The Farringdon-based start-up, founded three years ago by former Google employee Azmat Yusuf, said it will use the funding to roll out new cities and take on more staff.

“We remain focused on building a great product and user experience, and expanding it to everywhere in the world where we can make a difference,” the company said, adding that it wants its users to recommend which cities Citymapper should introduce next.   

The app, which is currently live in London, New York, Berlin and Paris, pulls in real-time public transport data and displays useful information such as how much each transport method costs, the weather at a chosen destination and how many calories one would burn if they walked or cycled.

Mayfair-headquartered Balderton, which has also invested in the likes of Bebo, Betfair and Lovefilm, said it has been following the company since its early days as Busmapper in 2011.

Commenting on the funding in a blog post, Bernard Liautaud, general partner at Balderton Capital, said: “We have always been impressed by the single-minded focus on product quality throughout the company, led by the founder Azmat Yusuf. This product particularly shines in two areas which we think are crucial in an app-based world:  removing friction, and distinctiveness of voice.

“We believe that in time Citymapper will become a home screen mobile app for any city-dweller, helping them get around their city,” he added.

Earlier this month, Balderton announced it had raised a further $305 million (£181 million) to invest in European technology start-ups, bringing its total European investment funds to $2.2 billion (£1.3 billion) and cementing its position as the largest venture capital fund solely focused on European technology businesses.

Other Citymapper investors included Index Ventures, an investor in Skype and Asos; Connect Ventures, which has funded Secret Sales; and Silicon Valley-based Greylock Partners, an investor in Facebook and Airbnb.


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