Earlier this month, a shareholder from Indonesia-based ride-sharing company, Go-Jek, revealed that it will launch its Go-Car service in Singapore following news of the Grab-Uber merger.
We learned a bit more about the other green-labelled tech firm in this article, and in an excerpt from Marketing Interactive, an authority in the industry reckoned that it would not be surprising should ComfortDelGro (Comfort) choose to partner Go-Jek.
And that might come true as TechCrunch today reported that Singapore’s largest taxi service company has held talks with the Indonesia transport giant “about a potential partnership”.
The Hi-Jek Of The Monopoly Begins
According to TechCrunch, a source told them Go-Jek “could see it enter Singapore as ride-hailing partner for its 15,000 drivers” with Comfort.
Both parties declined to comment.
Last year, Comfort announced that it had entered into a sale and purchase agreement with a subsidiary of Uber to acquire 51% stake in Lion City Holdings, who owns car rental company Lion City Rental.
That deal was worth an approximate S$295 million.
Soon after, in January this year, Uber announced the launch of its UberFlash service where users will be subjected to dynamic pricing and be offered the nearest taxi or car.
Comfort taxi drivers reported a 19% increase in earnings one month after its launch and productivity improved.
It was reported last month that Lion City Rental is not included in the acquisition, according to a Grab spokesperson, and the update only assured readers that Grab will continue to look after Uber drivers’ livelihoods and work to review banned drivers “case-by-case”.
In this article, an analyst is sceptical that the Comfort-Lion City Rental deal would go through with Uber exiting the region.
The analyst cited two scenarios; one would be the “return of ‘market normalcy'” and the other where Grab “might also choose to intensify competition by using its transport app as a ‘touch-base’ with consumers”.
The latter situation would not be favourable for Comfort, he said.
So, on one hand, this partnership for Go-Jek means filling the void that Uber left since the announcement of its exit in Southeast Asia.
On the other hand, this also solves the problem for Comfort and Lion City Rental, especially for the taxi company that has been trying to gain a foothold of the industry since the entrance of Grab and Uber in Singapore.
TechCrunch understands that Comfort drivers feel “uneasy” about Grab being the “only ride-hailing option” which could be something “Go-Jek could leverage in its talks with Comfort”.
Featured Image Credit: Asia Exchange, e27