Meet The Founder of UFODRIVE

Meet The Founder of UFODRIVE

22nd January 2021 by Michaela Salomon

When investing, your capital is at risk. 

The car rental market is worth $130 billion, but customers are increasingly demanding more from its providers. 

Renters want to rent a car in the same way they order food to their doorstep, or browse TV shows. They want minimal hassle, maximum range, and the ability to get from A to B with as little time spent on unnecessary admin as humanly possible. 

If you’ve ever waited in line for thirty minutes just to rent a car, you’ll be happy to know that there are better solutions – and one of them in particular has converted thousands of customers in 8 countries to a better system.

UFODRIVE has built a tech-first, 100% electric fleet of vehicles that you can pick up at any time, in 17 locations worldwide (and counting) in just a few minutes. No queues, no admin, no nonsense. 

We sat down with CEO Aidan McClean to find out more.

What is UFODRIVE’s mission? 

We’re accelerating the transition to electric mobility, with a radically better car rental solution. UFODRIVE is 100% electric and 100% digital, which makes it easier than ever before for consumers to drive electric. We’ve already reached thousands of people with our services, 97% of whom say they will return, and we’re well on the way to reaching even more by offering our solution to fleet operators looking to make the switch to electric as well.

What are the benefits of using UFODRIVE?

In addition to the individual and fleet-level environmental impact of course, we reward and incentivise our customers to continue driving electric through carbon credits in the way of cash reductions off future rentals, and loyalty schemes. We also partner with Ark2030 to make donations on behalf of customers after every rental to environmental regeneration projects in at risk regions across the world. The model as a whole is designed to ease the transition to net zero mobility.

What was the first big milestone for the company?

There were two key milestones combined that really allowed us to launch our business and prove the strong demand that exists for our product. Firstly, the build and release of our app was a huge step in facilitating electric driving for a consumer base that demands simplicity and digitisation. Secondly, our opening at Luxembourg Airport allowed us to set up our first location which built a strong foundation for exponential geographic expansion.

What’s next on the roadmap in terms of innovation?

We’re constantly evolving our technology and charger network connectivity to further ease the transition for customers switching to electric. We’re also proud of the 10 million hassle free kilometres already driven by our customers and that will remain a focus going forward, especially as we target further expansion in 2021.

We’re experiencing huge demand for our EV Mobility platform which is being driven primarily by the accelerating electric revolution. We’re currently executing an ambitious rollout plan to work with mobility partners and fleet customers to share our end-to-end solution and help them switch to electric in a co-ordinated and cost effective way.

What were you doing before this and why did you choose the entrepreneurship route?

I spent a number of years leading digital transformation projects in banks and insurance companies. Entrepreneurship has always appealed to me and I’ve long been fascinated with the smart implementation of technology. The opportunity to play a part in helping the world move to electric mobility was difficult to resist.

What have been the biggest successes to date?

Quite simply, it’s the reaction from our customers. We have the highest Net Promoter Score of car rental anywhere. We set out to create a customer-focused product that was significantly better than what the market previously offered them. I’m most proud of the incredible feedback we receive from our customers as well as being able to continue to grow despite the challenging situation throughout 2020.

How will you use the proceeds from this round? 

We’ll be expanding into new locations in 2021 as well as adding to our fleet across both new and existing locations. We also want to continue to develop and distribute our SaaS product which we see as a key component of our growth in the short to medium term.

Everything we’ve achieved so far we’ve done with a small team, and the next year will be an opportunity to selectively add to it.

How does UFODRIVE stand out against competitors? 

We have an unwavering commitment to the customer experience as a whole, which is critical as drivers adapt and become familiar with driving electric. We’re also extremely proud to already be at the stage of Beyond Net Zero emissions which is a target for many companies across the world.

What’s the number one hack you’d give to someone starting a business? 

Take action and move fast. Research is essential but it’s no substitute for taking the first steps towards achieving your business targets. I’m a big believer in learning by doing.

What do you think the future of car rental looks like? 

It will be electric and it will operate at a level of convenience way above that which many operators offer today.

When you’re not building the company, what do you enjoy doing?

Cycling. I’ve been a cyclist for many years. I always hated the experience of breathing in lungfuls of fumes when being passed by polluting petrol and diesel cars, so that was actually a significant contributor to my motivation for setting up UFODRIVE.

To find out more about UFODRIVE, and for the opportunity to invest in their mission, visit the pitch now.

Michaela Salomon

Michaela Salomon

Campaign Support Team

Digital Agency Kent