Ola's $500m Series F confirms global interest in India's taxi goldrushNews / Distribution | TechnologyBy Martin Cowen | November 18, 2015Share This article was originally published on India's biggest taxi app business Ola has closed a $500 million Series F round, with Scotland's Baillee Gifford taking a stake in the business for the first time.China's biggest taxi app business Didi Kuaidi is another one of the investors, although its involvement was confirmed before the round closed.The other funds contributing to the Series F are a cosmopolitan mix of existing investors: Russia-based DST Global, Japan's SoftBank Capital, NASDAQ-listed New York-based Falcon Edge and India's Tiger Global.Reports say that the latest round values Ola at $5 billion. A $400 million Series E round officially closed this April. It has raised $1.2 billion in the past year.Ola's statement says the latest windfall will be used for "supply initiatives, capacity building and newer use cases; going deeper into existing markets..."One big question hanging over Ola is whether or not it will get involved in Rides Everywhere, the global ridesharing alliance launched by Lyft and Didi this September. Ola and Didi have said that they will "exchange learnings" but this has not yet materialised into Ola joining.Such a move could be seen a "newer use case" as mentioned above.It recently launched Ola Share in Bangalore to test the waters for a social ridesharing brand.Meanwhile, Ola Money has been expanded from a means of paying for a cab to a standalone digital wallet product which, Ola hopes, will compete with India's other mobile payment services such as Paytm.Ola added that it currently taking a million bookings a day and has grown by 30 times in the past year. It has 350,000 vehicles on its books and 78% of Indians who use smartphones to book a cab have its app on their device.