GetTaxi Grabs $20M from Access Industries, Catches a Ride to New York
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their own passengers, taxi drivers can use the service to put the word out to other nearby drivers if they see large crowds waiting for rides.
Enterprise users pay GetTaxi a per-ride fee for the service, which offers reports on mileage and costs to businesses. Herman says arranging taxis through GetTaxi can also save companies money over hiring other car services. The company has some 400 enterprise customers such as Disney and Google that use GetTaxi overseas to cut down on the hassle of tracking their employees’ work-related taxi expenses. “When you get into a car, it is completely paid for,” Herman says. “You don’t have to keep the receipts to get reimbursed later.”
GetTaxi does have some competition. The CabSense app from Sense Networks analyzes GPS data from taxis provided by the city to help users find prime spots on the street to catch taxis. Other competitors in this sector include Weeels, an app that lets users hire cabs and find others to share rides with, and ride-sharing portal CabCorner.com. Herman believes GetTaxi’s breadth of services sets it apart from its rivals.
With its New York team growing, GetTaxi USA expects to launch its service in the city in the coming months, but Herman would not specify when. The company plans to submit a proposal in response to a request put out by the city’s administration for an official app for hailing taxis. Submissions are due later this month.
Regardless of the results of the RFP, Herman says GetTaxi USA plans to move forward, bringing its service to the American market, initially focusing on midsize to large cities. In addition to New York’s yellow taxis, which do not find fares through a central dispatcher, GetTaxi USA also wants to work with the city’s outer-borough taxis, which may go into service this year outside of Manhattan to pick up passengers from streets and via dispatcher.
Herman says she can relate to the challenge of getting a ride in New York, especially in areas where taxis are less frequent. A city resident for 12 years, she graduated from New York University and worked in investment banking prior to joining GetTaxi. “I lived in Brooklyn for seven years,” she says. “Even in Park Slope, I couldn’t get a yellow taxi. I had to walk eight blocks north to Flatbush to wait for a taxi back to Manhattan.”
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