To take on Ola & Uber, bullish youngsters to launch HyHop

To take on Ola & Uber, bullish youngsters to launch HyHop

A group of spirited youngsters has come together to launch 'HyHop', yet another app-based taxi services that will hit the crowded cab market next week.

That HyHop as a startup model is not surprising given that Bengaluru is the startup capital of the country. Considering repeated protests by drivers associated with Ola and Uber against drop in incentives, it now seems the startup community took a considerable amount of time before responding.

Moreover, HyHop was already in the market as the city’s first ‘hyperlocal cab service’ catering to select communities who wanted their Saturday evening outings to be hassle-free. Customers in Koramangala could book cabs for local deals, including shopping at malls and dinner at restaurants that were partners with HyHop.

“We had a fair amount of patronage on the basis of our social media and word-of-mouth campaigns, but the traditional pay model was tough as we had to pay fixed salaries to drivers. It was around the same time we saw protests by drivers associated with existing companies. We decided it is a good time to switch over to the aggregator model,” said co-founder Aditya Belwal.

Shree Vishal, a partner in the company, said the HyHop fare model will remain completely transparent for both drivers and the public. “We charge Rs 1,000 per month subscription fee for drivers. We have fixed Rs 10/km fare for small cars and Rs 14/km for sedans. Our driver will get the amount without any intervention,” he said.

The startup aims to challenge Ola and Uber which are offering rides at Rs 6 or Rs 7 per kilometre. “We know there are companies offering rides at Rs 6/km. We encourage all customers to divide the total fare value with the number of kilometres they have travelled. No more explanation is needed to expose the hidden charges,” Vishal said.

Ola and Uber do not charge any subscription fee for the drivers but take about 20% to 24%, including 5% service tax, of the total earnings. “We pay over 6,000 per month to the company, which is fine as long as we reach the set targets,” said Raghu, a driver with Uber.

Satish, a driver with Ola, said the commission is usually 20% and the scenario has turned grim after the drop in the incentives. Two groups of drivers associated with Ola and Uber are already planning to launch separate platforms. It is yet to be seen whether the bullish youngsters will survive in the increasingly competitive taxi market.

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