To reflect the major overhaul of its operations over the past four years, Cabcharge (ASX: CAB) taxi payments group will change its name to A2B Australia Ltd and distribute with 42 years of corporate history, to take on Uber and other ride-sharing firms. Andrew Skelton Cabcharge chief executive said the name change, was a highly symbolic shift, which requires shareholder approval.
To respond to arrival of ride-sharing companies like Uber, Ola, Taxify and new Chinese entrant Didi and disruptions triggered by technology, the company has been forced to respond. And some of the companies may not survive their fight for market dominance. Cabcharge on October 18, received the green flag, including the payments system taxi brand 13cabs.
When it is offered a way of making non-cash payments for a taxi fare, Cabcharge name has existed since 1976. With a Cabcharge terminal now in 97 percent of the taxis on Australia’s roads, Australia’s first EFTPOS solution for taxis, was developed 10 years ago.
Constant complaints about the lack of an independent board were ignored by Mr. Kermode, who died in April 2014. The company operates 8500 cabs under the 13cabs banner, in 2014 Mr. Skelton took over chief executive of Cabcharge. After being hit hard by sharp cuts to commissions on what had been a near-monopoly in payments networks inside taxis and by changes in government regulations in Australia, he has been busily reshaping the business.
With a big focus on the customer who wants to get from Point A to Point B, it is now a personal transport company which has been reinforced by the name change, he says. The ride sharing companies have fierce competition and he predicts that with a population of 25 million it will result in some of them closing in their Australian operations. Australian market’s new entrant is Didi.
One of the biggest weapons the taxi industry had in luring customers back, was the surge pricing used by the biggest player like Uber which was unpopular with customers, as it lifts the prices paid by customers at busy times. The company was surprised that in a rapidly transforming market the name A2B Australia Limited hadn’t been picked up earlier by an entrepreneur, said Mr. Skelton.
In June 2018, Acquisition of Mobile Technologies International (MTI) was announced by Cabcharge (ASX: CAB) for $6.6 million. It was trading at a market price of $2.20 as at October 22, 2018.
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