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Transportation: Global ride hailing on the wheels of tech – TheCable


Amazing how a synergy between Entrepreneurs and Government have built America into what was earlier described as The American Dream (coined by James Truslow Adams in his 1931 book The Epic of America, that Life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone), and we all love what they created. Other countries in the top 20 world economies have also followed similar blueprints to create experiences that drive good business and better living standards for humanity. Moreover, at the core of all sustainable solutions is repeatable value, which technology makes possible. The future of transportation business all across the globe now rests on the tech propeller, as more connected experiences have become available while on the go.

We will be carefully looking at some ideas that have worked while looking at some of their roots and fruits, which a good number of us have experienced. With artificial intelligence and robotics, we have begun to explore self-driving cars, with more astounding possibilities erupting out of the human mind. What can we learn from Uber, Easy Taxi, GrabTaxi, Lyft, Gett, Junoride, and Wingz? How can we create or leverage on such platforms to ease movement of persons, goods and services while reducing delays and disruptions due to congestions and accidents? What is the future of delivery? Will drones pick and drop off humans as a means of precision transportation? What can become possible with focused thinking and technology?

Uber (www.uber.com – located in San Francisco California, has raised a total of $25.2b in over 33 funding rounds. Their latest funding was raised on 14 September 2020 from a Post-IPO Debt round) develops, markets, and operates a ride-sharing mobile application that allows consumers to submit a trip request in a few easy clicks. They provide the drive or deliver option to driver-partners and food ordering on the go to riders. The technology product has created tens of thousands of jobs to cushion the unemployment numbers in Nigeria, within the last 7 years. They make the driver’s onboarding process so simple yet thorough to ensure maximum safety possible and a great customer service experience for riders who will rather order an Uber than drive their cars. They are a tech company that connects the physical and digital world to make movement happen at the push of a button for everyone, everywhere. Because they believe in a world where movement should be equally accessible for all, they are putting the tech infrastructure in place so that humans can move safely in a way that’s sustainable for our planet. The idea for Uber was born on a snowy night in Paris in 2008, and ever since then, their DNA of re-imagination and reinvention has carried on. They have gone from rides on four wheels to rides on two wheels to 18-wheel freight deliveries, inclusive of takeout meals to daily essentials to prescription drugs to just about anything you need at any time. Really impressive what they have made possible with technology. As of 2019, Uber operates in 69 countries with over seven billion trips carried out (that’s a-trip-per-human-living-on-the-planet average). Uber reveals what visionary leadership can make possible in organizations when great customer service experience is at the core of the company’s DNA.

Easy Taxi (www.easytaxi.com/br – has raised a total of $77m in over 7 funding rounds. Their latest funding was raised on 9 February 2016 from a Series E round) is an urban transport application that allows passengers to book and track a taxi located in Sao Paulo, Brazil. They are offering more security, higher quality and a city at customers’ fingertips through the tech-based platform. Other services include flexible payments, business trips and an assurance of punctuality. With 7 investors, inclusive of 5 lead, they have acquired Tappsi (www.tappsi.co – which allows customers to book a taxi in more than 9 cities in Colombia) on 15 December 2015. In April 2017, Maxi Mobility Group (parent company of Cabify) acquired Easy Taxi from Rocket Internet. Cabify (www.cabify.com/es – has raised a total of $477m in over 9 funding rounds. Their latest funding was raised on 11 February 2019 from a Debt Financing round). They are funded by 25 investors, inclusive of 4 lead, with Blue like an Orange Sustainable Capital and Inter American Development Bank being the most recent investors.

Grab (www.grab.com – raised a total of $12.5b in over 34 funding rounds. Their latest funding was raised on 30 July 2021 from a Corporate round) located in Central Region, Singapore with 4 acquisitions (inclusive of OVO, iKaaz, Bento and Kudo), is an application that provides transportation, logistics, and financial services. They pride themselves as providers of all-in-one essential services and earning opportunities. Guided by the Grab Way, their mission is to drive Southeast Asia forward by creating economic empowerment for everyone with millions of people using Grab for several moments in their everyday lives. Imagine a company that holds herself responsible for the sustainable economic empowerment of their region. Truly, visionary entrepreneurship makes our world go round. Grab also has a Financial Group, which aims to improve the economic mobility in Southeast Asia (with a total population of more than 655 million, about 8.5% of the world’s population) for everyone through financial inclusion. It becomes very exciting when businesses dream and drive very big dreams that create whole new experiences for universe that demands more. What can we do for Africa?

Lyft (www.lyft.com – has raised a total of $4.9b in over 26 funding rounds. Their latest funding was raised on 1 March 2019 from a Secondary Market round) located in San Francisco California, designs, markets, and operates a mobile application that matches drivers with passengers who request rides. They have done 11 organization acquisitions, inclusive of Halo Cars, Blue Vision Labs, Motivate, Kamcord, DataScore, YesGraph and Leo among others. Imagine the picture that comes to mind with the pay-off, “Great things start with a reliable ride” when Lyft does more than just get people from point to point, and proceeds to make the ride matter with ground transportation solutions and experiences that build relationships and drive results. They commute event, courtesy, and travel management solutions that help organizations reduce costs, save time, and streamline their ground transportation programs. The Business Portal serves as a transportation control center, where customers and clients can manage rides, update their team’s access to ride programs, get greater visibility into program spend, and more. They make it easy for employees to expense or charge rides directly to a centralized designated account.

Wingz (www.wingz.me – has raised a total of $13.7m in over 4 funding rounds. Their latest funding was raised on 25 January 2016 from a Series B round.) located in San Francisco California, offers peace of mind while traveling through predictable cost, confirmed availability, pre-booked, hassle-free, trusted drivers. They are funded by 34 investors with Duke Hong and Expedia being the most recent investors. Wingz want their customers to feel safe again, while taking a ride with their favorite Wingz driver; and promise a worry-free ride-sharing comparable with having same with a good friend or family member. They thoroughly vet all their drivers who have undergone Health and Safety training while promising the delivery of a ride that is as safe as humanly possible.

Engaging this research has been eye-opening and rewardingly refreshing as it became evident that big dreams and great teams make astounding accomplishments possible. Africa has a growing population of over 1.385 billion people needing the power of a technology connect that guarantees safety and precision of delivery every single time. Africa’s potential is immense and huge possibilities abound as we learn from successful companies with global presence. And there goes my concluding questions, “What experience do you want to create and sustain?”, “How big is the dream?” And “Who should be on your team?”

I remain open to conversations that further on the foregoing and thank you for your time investment, yours in tech, Olufemi Ariyo.

Email: [email protected]



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