The Okada Ban and regulatory clamps on cab-hailing services like Uber and Bolt (Taxify) is no longer news. In light of these events, Lagosians have cried out for alternatives to fill the vacuum the reforms created. Like an answer to prayers, the Lagos State Government has initiated a partnership with cab-hailing service, Ekocab.
New disruptor or Existing service?
Surprisingly, Ekocab was founded in 2017 by co-founders Nathaniel Gideon and Segun Cole. Basically, Ekocab is an On-demand transportation company that connects driver partners to riders through an App. In 2019, Ekocab signed a partnership with the Lagos State Taxi and Cab Operators Association to on-board thousands of yellow commercial taxies on its platform.
The founders believe that the advent of the likes of Uber and Bolt created strife between regulators, transport unions, and ride-hailing services. This led to a plethora of unresolved issues like lack of inclusion of already existing yellow cab drivers, passenger safety, non-compliance with rates, and driver welfare. Hence, the need for a cab-hailing service that will partner with the government to and address these issues.
How does it work?
In addition, private car owners alongside yellow taxi drivers, will also be incorporated into the service. The driver-partners are given proper training and proper documentation as required by the government. Using the Ekocab mobile app, it connects a driver-partner and a rider who requests a ride. This is much like every other cab-hailing service.
Price and Cost Implications
The cost of an Ekocab ride is based on the distance of the trip, total travel time, and the base fare. Users can choose to pay for their rides using their smartphones. Interestingly, it utilizes a negotiable pricing model with thresholds unlike others with fixed price meters. Furthermore, it will charge a 15% commission on rides from both yellow taxis and private cars compared to competitors with 20-30%.