A startup funds drivers, car-sharing gets squeezed, and air taxis are coming. LegalRideshare breaks it down.
Flying taxis, funding drivers, and unnecessary violence. It’s all here in This Week in Rideshare.
A new startup in Nigeria is helping put drivers behind the wheel. Bloomberg explains:
Moove, a mobility fintech startup, has raised $23 million to provide financing to Uber Technologies Inc. drivers to buy cars across the sub-Saharan Africa region.
Each vehicle costs about $9,000 to $13,000 depending on the model and brand. The company runs mainly Toyota Motor Corp. cars, except in Ghana where it has a partnership with Volkswagen AG. Drivers are required to pay a deposit of 5% of a vehicle’s worth and are able to stretch repayments over 24 to 48 months, with an interest ranging between 8% to 13%. A 60-month product will launch in the fourth quarter, Delano said.
The costs keep piling up for the car-sharing world. Barrons explains:
Consumers paid over 50% more on average for an Uber or Lyft ride last month compared to January 2020, according data from a market-research firm. The high price of rides is being fueled by drivers withholding their labor, some due to concern for losing unemployment benefits.
Customers using Zipcar, who rent vehicles by the hour, are slapped with state and local taxes that can exceed 20% on short-hop trips in many cities, according to research my colleagues and I conducted. Those rates in some cases are higher than on “sin goods” such as alcohol and tobacco. A roundtrip for groceries in some cities may cost you well over $5 in taxes alone. Unable to turn a profit, the car-sharing company Car2go withdrew entirely from North America even before the pandemic.
A Lyft driver was arrested after assaulting country singer Clare Dunn. NBC News reported:
Albert Boakye, 46, was charged with misdemeanor assault after he was accused of physically removing Dunn from his vehicle on Highway 70 South on June 26 following an argument over a missed turn, according to the Metro Nashville Police Department.
“According to Dunn, after Boakye missed the turn, he became very angry and stopped on the side of the road where he forcibly removed her from the vehicle and then grabbed her by the neck before throwing her to the ground,” police said.
Air taxis are coming…in 2024 (apparently). Illinois Today reported:
Joby Aviation, which promises to build and operate a commercial taxi fleet by 2024, began trading Wednesday, testing the imagination of public investors.
Joby and more than 12 other electric air taxi companies sent a letter to the US House of Representatives last month requesting that aircraft charging infrastructure be included in national infrastructure legislation. The House of Representatives will negotiate an expansion of the bill passed by the Senate on Tuesday, but it is unclear what will be added. A Joby spokeswoman said the letter was “popular” and the company was “excited” to respond to the request in the coming weeks.
Yet another vicious attack against a rideshare driver. Resonate reported:
An Asian Lyft driver was brutally attacked by his passenger in Riverside, California.
The incident occurred when Ye Lu picked up 23-year-old Michael Trunko around 5:20am on 1 August 2021.
Trunko, a DJ, wanted to load the backseat with his equipment. When Lu told him he could only bring whatever could fit in the trunk, Trunko turned violent.
Using a metal microphone, Trunko began beating the Asian driver.
In footage captured by a dash cam, Tunko can be heard saying, “If I can’t use the backseat you’re going to get fired.”
A thudding is then heard before Lu starts screaming. Lu eventually escaped and called 911.
“Someone attacked me,” Lu told the dispatcher. “I think I will die.. .My head is bleeding.”
You can help by donating to his medical fund here: https://www.gofundme.com/f/ye-lu-med-damage-relief-fund-for-lyft-attack
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