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David Hunter


david@ta8me.co.uk www.ta8me.co.uk


JOIN THE ‘TAKE ME’ “


The UK taxi trade is a fragmented market; there are thousands of private hire companies scattered across our island. Each and every one of them serving their local communities to a high standard. Every single one surviving by making profit.


The local staff know their customer base, the locality and their drivers. The unique selling points of these businesses is that they can offer multiple booking platforms, whether it be by booking, by app or by the traditional phone. However, what these small businesses lack is the backing; having a network that offers national branding, resources on a national level for accounts, sales, purchasing and legal know how.


Our beloved industry is being attacked by loss making apps that we have seen invade the market space over the last decade, which has put some of our businesses in jeopardy. They can’t compete with the endless supply of promo codes, driver incentives and huge marketing budgets. Both drivers and customers, alike have been drawn away from the traditional operators to these sexy apps, rendering many private hire companies obsolete or in dire need of modernisation.


Take a student arriving in a new town, fresh from their parents arms and not knowing the locality. It is so easy for them to book on a national branded app, giving them peace of mind and knowing exactly the standard of service they will receive; the name of the app and the branding will be important. It is far easier and more


The outcome goal is to streamline our services, improve efficiencies, and to bring in a national brand bonded together by technology and the local talent housed at each company.


progressive for them to book an Uber/ Bolt / Ola than it is for them to use Google and phone the local taxi company, which they have never heard of, and that will appear outdated by its branding.





Such dated names as: Radio Cars, ABC 247, Something Line, or Express appear to brand the taxi company from a bygone age. These legacy firms may well have the reputation with local folk that have used them for the past 20 years. But for an outsider coming in stepping off a train from London, then it is far easier to reach for that national brand app which you have used in so many cities before.


The private hire industry however, still offers a higher level of local community service, a better standard of driver and a superior understanding of its customers. It is easier to book transportation from a wedding reception, conference or party with your local operator than it is on Uber for example.


For this reason, many private hire companies have flourished and grown during the Uber years, as the market for using taxis and PHVs has grown as they become more accessible. We are still the go to firms, we are far better at servicing the needs of school contracts and local business than any Silicon Valley- backed app ever can.


32


MAY 2021


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