Taxify receives boost in funding, eyes new markets (4)
The Estonian company Taxify announced Thursday that it has received a big boost in funding, an additional 1.4 million euros for its startup taxi application, which should help it move into new markets.
Taxify provides an Android, iOS, and mobile web application that lets you order a cab online. This allows traditional taxi drivers and firms to communicate more easily with their customers.
Users of the app create an account, and the GPS phone tracking function and the nearest available vehicles allow the user to come to an agreement on the point of pickup and destination, and the length of time it will take to reach the customer.
The company has a dominant position in Eastern Europe, and Taxify said it hopes to expand in the near future with the additional funding.
In Estonia, Taxify is available in Tallinn, Tartu, Pärnu, Kuressaare, and Haapsalu. According to the app tracker Distimo, it has been a regular top 10 download from the Apple app store in the last month, and a dominant No. 1 in travel apps in Estonia. The app won the popular vote of the Estonian startup competition Ajujaht (Brain Hunt) in March.
It has also set up in the Baltic capitals of Riga and Vilnius. It is also registered entities in Stockholm, Amsterdam and Minsk.
The company expanded to Helsinki, Finland in July, but has met resistance from local taxi companies, which according to Helsingin Sanomat, has launched its own app, which is still in the testing stage.
Taxify is in a crowded field of applications involving taxi services, which in many cities require licenses – sometimes expensive ones – to operate, and are loath to give up their dominant position.
Another taxi service, Uber, has been making international headlines and moving into new markets. Taxify generally works with current taxi companies to tie them more easily together with customers. The American company Uber allows people to self-register their services.
In London in June, the city's licensed meter-equipped taxis held a strike against the startup's expansion into their market in June, inspiring the Twitter hashtag #Ubergeddon, reported technology website TechCrunch.
Investors contributing to Taxify’s new round of funding include advertising network Adcash, venture capital company for startups Rubylight, and London-based investment fund TMT Investments.