As the regular visitors of this place know already, we had shared with you guys in November the speculations that Careem was planing to launch a rickshaw service. The Dubai-based Ride-hailing service has FINALLY, now, confirmed the plans to launch ‘Tezz Rickshaws’ in Lahore and Karachi. The company sees the auto-rickshaw sector as an important contributor to future growth.
After the successful launch of cabs in late 2015, Careem is now looking to expand its footprints and product offerings in existing as well as new sectors, such as auto-rickshaws. At the moment Careem has a fleet of over 9,000 cars in Pakistan.
Leaving aside the systematic challenges and operational hurdles, it is important to appreciate the sheer size of opportunity Careem represents. The company has strong presence in 11 countries and over 47 cities across Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan.
Recently, Careem’s subscriber base breached the 4 million mark. The company also claims that it has a larger market capitalization than rival Uber in most of the 32 cities; and it offers greater range of services than its competitors.
Auto-rickshaws are a ubiquitous part of the urban transport system in all major cities across Pakistan. These vehicles have become an important aspect of urban mobility for millions of people. Yet they also represent an increasingly inefficient sector – and they are getting lost in the ever-changing dynamics of urban mobility in Pakistan.
It is therefore important to assess the role this sector could play in improving the sustainability of urban transport, and to identify reforms that could make the transportation more efficient and affordable to all citizens of the state.
In Pakistan more than 40% of the population lives in urban areas. Providing high-quality, rapid, efficient transportation is critical to achieving the goals of modernizing the transportation system, improving social mobility and mitigating environmental risks associated with climate change.
Careem’s launch in Pakistan owes to the entrepreneurial capabilities of 36-year-old Junaid Iqbal, the current managing director at Careem. Previously, he served as a member of the broadcast team at Geo News and American news channel CNBC. He said in a statement:
“Rickshaws are the transport lifeline for Pakistan’s urban populace. They operate out of stands, which makes for highly inefficient dispatching. We are doing a pilot project to see how well our technology can help accentuate the incomes of rickshaw drivers and provide a more economical option for commuters, woven with the ease that our technology provides.”
Initially launched in 2015, Careem now provides ride-hailing service in Lahore, Islamabad and Karachi. Recently, the company has announced to expand its services to about six cities including Faisalabad, Gujranwala, Peshawar, Hyderabad and Multan.
What we know about Tezz Rickshaws’?
The pilot project has launched on December 25 in Lahore and Karachi. Initially the service will be available to limited number of users at a base rate of only Rs. 60 and a lowest charge of Rs. 75. The company expressed its willingness to expand ‘Tezz Rickshaws’ project in order to increase the fleet size and to cope with the growing demand.