Blake Turner, founder of 25Cab, started his company as a means of providing a fairer, more flexible ridesharing alternative for people around the world. He is passionate about making sure both divers and their passengers get the best value for their money.
We asked Blake some questions about his company and the role he sees it playing in shaking up the ridesharing industry:
What inspired you to create 25Cab?
I believe that Uber takes advantage of people and wanted to offer a fairer alternative for both drivers and their passengers. I think rideshare drivers deserve to keep as much of their earnings as possible and that this will enable passengers to save money in the process.
In what regions is 25Cab available? What kind of vehicles can be used?
25Cab can be use virtually everywhere, in every language, for nearly every circumstance. If you want to give rides with a rickshaw Vietnam or a ‘95 Civic in Mexico, 25Cab will let you do it.
How does the relationship between drivers and your service work?
Unlike Uber, we aren’t part of the driver/passenger transaction and we take no fee off fares. After 8 free months, drivers pay per month, per 6 months or per year to use our product.
This costs $3 to $7 per month, depending on the plan, which is a tiny amount compared to the 25% or more Uber takes from drivers. Say you make $500 a month driving for Uber; at a minimum they will take $125 of your money that month.
Are there security or safety concerns for drivers or passenger with 25Cab’s business model?
People asked the same thing of our competitors when ridesharing began. We vet driver applications, we record all activity on our product and ultimately most of our drivers also drive for our competitors as well.
We feel it’s been quite adequately proven that the ridesharing business model derives its viability from the power of technology and the basic goodness of most people.
What does 25Cab hope to achieve in the ridesharing space?
We hope to force our competitors to treat their drivers and customers better. We also hope to make ridesharing available in markets where it still doesn’t exist and where it wouldn’t otherwise be possible.
If we free people to start their own taxi businesses, regardless of how underdeveloped their country or community is, we think they can help to stimulate their local economy and ultimately benefit their society as a whole.
Does 25Cab see itself as “the good guy” to Uber’s “bad guy”?
I wouldn’t say that, but the fact seems quite apparent: Uber does not care about its drivers. 25Cab does. We will never raise prices on drivers just in the name of profit or convenience. Uber is going for a big IPO. That means they have to be dedicated to one thing: profit.
They’ve made it very clear that money is the only thing they value for quite some time now, so it’s a good move for them. 25Cab believes the better business model is one that empowers drivers to build a million little rideshare businesses, rather than making itself a usurious monolith.