Uber may be prevailing in almost each country in the world, but it currently faces some big problems occurring worldwide with drivers feeling consistently short changed by the company.
Africa Ride is available on iOS and Android platforms and enables users to order private drivers, while proceeding the process of that driver in-app. In terms of operation it is very similar to Uber and its online finding drivers via an app. The crucial difference lies in real driver involvement in the business. Africa Ride empowers each and every driver by giving them ownership of a percentage stake in the business unlike the transportation giant.
Africa Ride app offers corporate accounts with weekly and monthly payment terms with the option to pay by wallet, and passengers can choose drivers according to the area they are in. It also offers personal customer care services disrupting the standard of speaking to an app that promotes trust between the firm and its clients.
Africa Ride operates in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Rustenburg. It is going to spread in the next few months to markets which have never used this type of service before.
Local firms fighting back and succeeding is not something we see often. International powerhouse brands permanently spread into African territories, conquering the market and truly putting solid stress on local companies. Africa Ride is looking for funding to hit new markets, but already has over 500 drivers in its system.
As reported by different major web sites in Croatia like Index and Dnevnik, Croatian transportation minister Butković has met with taxi representatives and stated that Uber is not legal in Croatia as well as Cammeo in Split. Uber and Cammeo replied that they are not taxi and that they are not violating the law.
Uber launched operations in Zagreb in October 2015, and expanded their services in Split and Dubrovnik in June 2016. Similar like in some other markets, Uber drivers have faced different difficulties like threats, attacks even firing up the vehicle while the driver was in the car by their opponents.
Cammeo is well-known brand in Croatia and offers taxi service in Zagreb and few other cities but in Split they decided to offer “rent-a-car service with the driver”. They also bought around 30 brand new Dacia cars so every driver whether the driver is licenced taxi driver or non-licenced gets their branded car, software and marketing support. They launched in November 2016 but just after 2 weeks as stated on Index half of their vehicles were taken by inspection. As also written in another the article Cammeo said that they didn’t have the same treatment compared to Uber.
Regarding the statement of transportation minister Butković about Uber in Croatia and Cammeo in Split, beside giving fines to their drivers he announced that their vehicles will be confiscated but didn’t specify when.
Uber has issued the statement that drivers who use Uber follow all the rules in Croatia and pay the appropriate tax on the full amount of their ride price. Also, that Uber application connects checked drivers with riders who want safe ride and that this kind of model is different than auto taxi as this is car rental with driver. They also expressed hope that actual laws will be modernized in order to be according with recommendations of the European commission for the sharing economy and that Croatia will be reference country in that area too, after positive feedback from Sweden, Estonia, Lithuania and Portugal.
Well-known Croatian entrepreneur Saša Cvetojević said that he thinks that the situation that after one year of Uber business in Croatia is said that they are not doing business legally shows all the weakness of administration and doing business in Croatia. He added that if this service is not legal it should have been treated that way from day one and if the Croatia wants to stimulate development of new business models during this time could have been implemented solution that would enable this kind of business model. Also, he said that due to the high season and Advent in Zagreb, with a lot of tourists, that this is the worst time to bring such decision.
The world’s biggest ridesharing platform BlaBlaCar has announced they acquired a Hungarian startup Autohop and, therefore, now they are present also in Hungary, Romania, Serbia and Croatia.
BlaBlaCar is present in 16 countries according to their main page country selection and based on Crunchbase data so far raised 110m usd in 2 rounds, from some of the the world A-list investors like Index Ventures, Accel Partners among others.
BlaBlaCar is headquarted in Paris and in July 2014 got the biggest investment that one French startup ever got – 100m usd. It enabled to fast open new markets or to acquire existing market leaders.
Markets like above mentioned are great because GDP is significant lower than the average EU GDP but the transportation costs are pretty much the same so we can expect further growing a ridesharing community. However, question is how much they will be able to monetize platform in those markets comparing to some wealthier markets.
We will see if some new ridesharing platforms will evolve in this market but anyway, having the biggest player in this industry present in this market can most likely mean only better conditions to travelers as community will grow more and big and safe environment is the most important factors in ridesharing platform.