Steve O'Hear, techcrunch.com 18/12/2014
Estonian startup Taxify is one of a number of taxi apps aiming to help traditional taxi firms and drivers fight back against behemoth Uber and its ilk. It does this by providing an iOS, Android and mobile web app that lets you order a cab online. This helps to bring the same convenience of Uber et al. to the licensed ‘taxi’ industry, helping it compete via technology instead of merely lobbying regulators or protesting loudly, Ubergeddon-style.
Today the company has picked up an additional €1.4 million in funding, adding to the previous €100,000 raised — money it will use to consolidate what it claims is a leading position in Eastern Europe, and for further European expansion.
Specifically, Taxify is active in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Finland, and I’m told is eyeing up four more countries in the near future, including Netherlands. Of the 53 countries Uber is present in, Finland and the Netherlands can be counted. However, my understanding is that it has also registered entities in Latvia and Lithuania.
Investors participating in Taxify’s new round of funding include advertising network Adcash, Rubylight (a previous investor in Ask.fm and the Russian social network Odnoklassniki), and London-based investment fund TMT Investments.
Like other mobile taxi apps, Taxify lets you choose a taxi based on arrival time, price list, car model and user feedback ratings. After confirming your order, you can also track your taxi’s pending arrival on a map in real time.
Meanwhile, the pitch to licensed taxi firms and individual taxi drivers — who might otherwise be finding it difficult to compete with mobile transport apps like Uber and Hailo — is that Taxify’s technology platform and “marketing power” can help level the playing field by giving them an opportunity to get additional orders from mobile users.
Of course, marketing power is relative, and with a gigantic $1.2 billion round of new funding, Uber isn’t exactly short in that department, even if it continues to shoot itself in the foot sometimes.
Estonia’s Taxify, An Anti-Uber Taxi App, Raises €1.4M For Further European Expansion