Ola announces plans to enter United Kingdom taxi and private hire market

Ola announces plans to enter United Kingdom taxi and private hire market

Ola has over 1 million drivers and 125 million customers across 110 cities and says 1 billion rides are made through the app annually.

Ola said it would offer industry-leading commissions and daily payments to drivers, take note of passenger safety with screened drivers and a 24/7 voice support, options to share details with emergency contacts.

Co-founder and chief executive Bhavish Aggrarwal said the firm chose the United Kingdom for its European launch as "one of the world's most evolved transportation markets".

Mint first reported on May 28 that Ola is adopting a holding company structure similar to that of India's most successful internet startup Flipkart to boost the cab-hailing company's valuation and improve the management of its businesses.

Services such as Uber - often called "ride-hailing" or "ride-sharing" apps - at their simplest were created to link drivers, via a mobile phone app, with people who they were prepared to give a lift to in return for a bit of petrol money. However, the USA firm's legal woes continue as the Licensed Taxi Drivers Association said it was seeking advice about potential class action against Uber, over losses to earnings. Ola launched in Australia in Sydney earlier this year.

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Both firms are backed by the Japanese technology giant Softbank.

Ola's latest moves to expand overseas is part of a broader company strategy to create a massive global business that will be generate consistent revenues, alongside its domestic Indian operations.

Ola founder and chief executive Bhavish Aggarwal studied computer science in Mumbai and worked for Microsoft after that.

Uber has also won considerable public backing: more than 8,00,000 had signed a petition urging TFL to change their decision. He was 26 when he founded Ola in 2011.

Just like when it announced its entry into the Australian market in February, Ola seeks to sign up driver partners in cities such as Cardiff, Newport and Vale of Glamorgan, apart from the regions, before opening the platform for customers. "The UK is a fantastic place to do business and we look forward to providing a responsible, compelling, new service".

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