Obi On Republic | Deal Review

Apr 10, 2021 5 min read
Obi On Republic | Deal Review

Company Overview & Business Model

Problem Addressed: There are thousands of different individual ridehail apps globally, but most consumers aren't aware of them. Price discrepancies between options can vary 25% at any given moment (and even more with surges and longer rides), meaning that riders are always losing valuable time and money. Quite simply, we all overpay for rides.

The Product: With Obi, riders can easily compare prices across all ridehail apps and save when they book. The app gives riders all the information they need to get the best ride at the best price. The company's mission is to maximize convenience and accessibility for users by handling the logistical heavy lifting of searching all ride providers and sorting them to help riders choose the best ride.

How Obi Makes Money: For each ride booking, Obi currently collects a service fee of up to 10% from ridehail providers. Additional revenue streams will also include targeted advertising, data sales, subscription products, and technology licensing.

Customers: People looking for booking a ride on Uber, Lyft, or similar apps.

Invest in Obi (previously Bellhop)
Republic is a startup investing platform where you can invest as little as $10 in impactful startups

Obi Business Structure

  • Form: Corporation
  • Jurisdiction of Incorporation/Organization: Delaware
  • Date of organization: April 14, 2014

The Deal Terms

  • Security: Crowd SAFE
  • Valuation Cap: $19,500,000
  • Discount Rate: 0%
  • Min. Offering Amount: $25,000
  • Max. Offering Amount: $250,000
  • Min. Investment: $250

The Team

Payam Safa (CEO) studied Computer Science & Engineering, graduating Cum Laude Honors from UCLA. He began his career programming drones and satellites for the US government with security clearance. Next, as a consultant for Accenture, he built enterprise systems for Fortune 500 companies. After an MBA at INSEAD where he was the Co-President of the Real Estate Club, he moved to Indonesia to co-found a hotel chain. Continuing his entrepreneurial journey, he founded Chanelink, the first channel manager in Indonesia. He is using his unique skills and experiences as a technologist in the travel and hospitality space to bring Obi to market and establish it as the industry leader.

Ji Young Choi (COO) studied Business Administration, graduating on the Dean's List from Cornell University. She began her career as a Strategy & Management Consultant with Accenture for Fortune 100 companies before becoming Head of Strategy at a speculative land development firm in emerging markets. After successfully leading multi-billion dollar projects in developing countries, she returned to Management Consulting as a Senior Strategy Consultant for Booz Allen Hamilton, solving complex problems for the US government's most high-profile agencies - from the US Treasury and the FBI to NASA and The Smithsonian. She then used her skills and experience to join the world of high-growth startups, first helping to build and scale the Enterprise business at General Assembly (exit: acquired by The Adecco Group in 2018), before becoming Co-Founder and COO of Teckst (exit: acquired by LiveVox in 2019), and then joining Obi in May 2020 as COO to revolutionize the mobility space.

Obi Cap Table

The table below lists the beneficial owners of twenty percent (20%) or more of the Company’s outstanding voting equity securities, calculated on the basis of voting power:

Obi's Cap Table
(Source: Obi's Form C)


The Company’s primary competitors are Migo, Google Maps, and Transit:

Google Maps has added on-demand ride transportation as an additional mode of transport when a user inputs a destination. They have an advertising business model, and the user experience may not be optimized enough to be a ride hailing app.

Migo is a multi-modal ground transportation app that combines ride sharing and bike sharing in addition to the ride hailing capability. According to the founder, their experience for booking rides is also sub-optimal when compared to the Company.

Transit is a public transit app that shows bus and subway routes and timetables. They have recently integrated Uber and Lyft into the app, giving their users the ability to book some ride options as well.

Intellectual Property

Obi's Intellectual Property

How will Obi Use The Funds Raised On Republic?

Obi use of Republic campaign’s proceeds

Intermediary Fee This fee will be paid directly to the intermediary for assisting in conducting this Offering.

Engineering Team These proceeds will be used to pay engineers to continue to build the platform.

Executive Team These proceeds will be used to pay executive leadership (CEO, COO, product, and marketing)

Marketing These proceeds will go towards Marketing expenses for paid ads (Social, Google Ads, App stores, influencers, etc.)

Design These proceeds will be used to pay designers for the website, app, and branding.

Business Development These proceeds will be used to pay our business development team to onboard suppliers and expand distribution partners.

Accounting These proceeds will be used to pay our accounting team to update our books every month.


The Company has the following debt outstanding:

Obi's Debt
Obi's Loan from the founder (Source: Obi's Form C)

Financials & Liquidity

As of January 31, 2021, the company had an aggregate of $203,597 in cash and cash equivalents, leaving the company with approximately 4 months of runway (the company considers all highly liquid investments with an original maturity of 90 days or less to be cash equivalents). The company currently does not have any additional outside sources of capital other than the proceeds from the Offering.

Obi's Financials
Source: Obi's Form C

Conclusion: Did I Invest?

I’m still in the process of writing a full deal report and decide whether or not I will invest in Obi. Do you want to receive the report as soon as I published it? Subscribe to the Angel Notes newsletter:

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