A new ride-sharing service has come to Sydney, creating fierce competition over the festive period for transport giant Uber.
Launched in Sydney on Tuesday, the Estonian company Taxify claims to already have 4,000 registered drivers here.
Taxify founder and CEO Markus Villig said the company is excited to kick-off in the Australian market.
“We are confident that locals are looking for an alternative ride hailing option, and Taxify is committed to providing both riders and drivers with what they want,” he said.
Taxify said it believes in providing drivers with higher revenue-per-ride, taking only 15% commission – about half of what its competitors take.
For the month of December, the company is offering riders a 50% discount on trips.
Taxify Australia Country Manager, Samuel Raciti, said riders could expect to save money and drivers could expect to earn more when using the service.
"In the longer term, we will aim to always keep the base fares around 5% lower than competitors.
“We value and reward loyalty, and are excited to offer a new experience to Sydneysiders,” he said
Raciti said Taxify will implement surge pricing in the future, which will be capped at 1.5 times, excluding public holidays which will have a higher surge rate.
The company began four years ago and is already established in 20 cities, including Cape Town, Toronto and Paris.
Villig attributes the rapid growth of Taxify to a business model based on fairness and transparency.
“It is because of this that we have had so many drivers sign up to Taxify in such a short space of time,” he said.
Raciti said by focusing on innovation and tech, the company can operate in a lean way and grow fast, whilst keeping costs down for drivers and riders alike.
The service allows drivers to select a radius for their trips, and provides riders with a 24-hour customer service channel and the ability to share their ride details with other users.
A taxify vehicle can carry up to four passengers, with a minimum $9 spend.
Taxify is also expected to launch in Melbourne before Christmas, and in other major cities across Australia in 2018.
"Australia has a marked lack of competition in the ride-hailing space, and Taxify is here to offer Australians more choice," said Raciti.
"We believe that Taxify offers a better deal to drivers and riders, and our aim is to be the largest ride-hailing provider in Australia."
More information about prices and the service can be found here.