El-Taxi Trading has become the latest company to enter the taxi hailing app business in which taxi owners’ associations are members along with the management of the company. It has been four months since the establishment of the company.
The new company that developed and deployed Taxiye, a new ride hailing app, plans to have about 10,000 taxi service providers in Addis Ababa under it. For the drivers to get accustomed to the app, taxis in the city are being registered free of charge and they will not be obliged to pay commissions for the time being.
In the future, the company also plans to extend its reach to regional towns and it is establishing presence in Bahir Dar, Adama, Mekele and Dire Dawa.
“We do not just want to limit ourselves to taxi hailing only; we want to widen our services to a more general logistics service, which include car rental and others similar services,” Beki Daba, CEO of El-Taxi Trading told The Reporter.
In the long run, the company will work on replacing 10,000 taxis (blue and white taxis a.k.a. Ladas) operating in Addis with fuel efficient vehicles. For this, they are arranging credit services from various banks which will provide 70 percent of the cost to buy new vehicles. The remaining 30 (297,000 birr) percent will be covered by the taxi owners.
But, as current Lada owners cannot immediately pay that amount even if they sell their taxis, the company has made payment arrangements in which the taxi owners will pay 10 percent of the cost at the ordering and the remaining 20 percent at the delivery of the vehicles.
There are about 500 taxis registered to operate using Taxiye app and they will pay 10 percent of commission to the service they receive from the app developers.
Six taxi owners’ associations in Addis Ababa have signed up to be shareholders at the company including one minibus taxi owners’ association.
“Our small commission from taxi owners and the fact that the ownership that the taxi owners will have at the company gives us a competitive edge in the market,” Beki says.
El-Taxi and its partner company El-Net Technologies also have a long-term plan of expanding to 18 eastern and southern African countries. It is also investing 200 million birr on a car assembly plant under its partner company El-Auto Assembly.
Apart from taxis, the company envisages to incorporate motorbikes, three-wheelers and different vehicles that can provide transportation services according to various arrangements.