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Christmas Event in the RDS Tuesday 4th December, 2018

Christmas Event in the RDS

We ushered in the festive season with a relaxed evening of business, entertainment and a glass of wine in the RDS on Thursday , 29 November.  

For many of us, Christmastime is taxi-time, and we were delighted to have Alan Fox, General Manager of  mytaxi Ireland, to tell us a story of transformation in the taxi market in Ireland: "Using Traditional Methods to Drive Rapid Growth in a Digital Platform Business".

Alan Fox of mytaxi Ireland told us the story of how digital innovation plus traditional engagement has led to rapid growth for mytaxi.  Alan was appointed as General Manager in March 2018, he held various senior management positions in AA Ireland, Telefonica, O2 Ireland, Zurich Insurance, Meteor Mobile Communications and Eircom.

Alan gave us the history of mytaxi which was founded in June 2009 in Hamburg Germany.  Mytaxi acquired Hailo in 20016.  Hailo had been launched in Ireland in 2012.  Mytaxi is now available in 100 European cities with 10 million passengers and 100,000 drivers across Europe. 

In Ireland mytaxi has more than 11,000 drivers nationwide, who have carried 4 million passengers in 2018 (an increase of 25% in year on year).  They have also gowned their corporate business by 91% in 2018.  The average waiting time in Q3 2018 was 3 min 36 sec which is a 10% improvement on the same quarter last year.

They are constantly improving the digital technology and innovation which has been the key to their success.  They have international development teams in Hamburg and Barcelona and a data science team in Berlin. They base their improvements on feedback received from passengers and drivers. Some innovation includes, adding a Google map interface, having a fleet type option and Match which will allow passengers to share taxies.

Challenging the status quo is an essential part of the mytaxi’s DNA. They use a multi-pronged, cohesive marketing approach using traditional marketing and advertising tools and have driven penetration beyond early adopters and significantly increased brand salience.

They work with city planners, civil servants and politicians to support urban mobility & transport solutions – NTA, DCC, DAA, Chamber of Commerce, etc.

We have a huge challenge in Dublin with the inner- city traffic and it is getting worse.  Mytaxi believe we need to rethink urban mobility and want to be part of the solution.  They want to reduce city congestion in an eco-friendly way by:

Providing Electrical Vehicles such as e-scooters and other micro-mobility solutions
Taxi sharing should be allowed within the current regulatory framework
Partnering with key stakeholders to create transport bundles across multiple modes
And by working with stakeholders to develop more innovative city management e.g. Dublin night mayor, phased closing times, etc.

In the short term mytaxi wants to boost driver supply, address taxi restrictions at Dublin airport and expand across other regions in Ireland.  In the long term they want to partner with the NTA and the Department of Transport and other agencies to push Dublin to becoming a smarter city.

Alan summed up by saying that technical innovation is critical however we do need to combine it with traditional business approaches such as outreaching to stakeholders remains vital.  To be successful you need to have a multi-channel customer engagement process, physical presence, a comprehensive marketing strategy and invest in sales people.

We finished the evening with a delightful performance from the RDS Jazz singers and a glass of wine.  A very enjoyable MBA event.

Our thanks to the RDS for supporting this event.

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