Battle for on-demand cab in Bengaluru is not limited to Uber and Ola. Soon HDK Cabs, backed by former Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy, will start plying on the road of Bengaluru. According to the Economic Times report, with 2,000 drivers HDK cabs will kick-off its service in Bengaluru by the second half of the next month. Following the launch in Bengaluru, it will further intends to foray into Mysuru, Mangaluru and Belagavi.
Kumaraswamy, who had publicly extended support to drivers in March this year when they hit the streets to protest in the wake of falling incentives offered by Ola and Uber, plans to invest Rs 50 crore over the next two years into his venture HDK Cabs.
HDK Cabs will focus on driver benefits, including a 5 per cent commission charged for drivers, along with life insurance worth Rs 10 lakh, Rs 5-lakh accident insurance and Rs 2-lakh medical insurance.
The company will also provide free servicing for vehicle and family benefits, which include financial experts guiding the drivers with a monthly saving plan and provision of children’s school items.
The former chief minister was slated to launch cab service in April this year, however preparation appears to have taken time.
The company plans to be three to four car categories that will show up on the HDK Cabs app. On the lines of Uber and Ola, HDK Cabs will categorise offering such as mini, hatchback option at Rs 12.50 per km, a sports sedan option at Rs 14.5 per km, a sports utility vehicle option at Rs 18.50 per km and an outstation cab option. The app will also have an SOS panic button and GPS tracking for customer safety.
“The SOS panic button is one of the main differentiators of the app from Ola and Uber,” said Sumit Kumar, a coordinator for the technology team at HDK Cabs to ET. “We are presently a 10-member tech team and are testing out the app for Android now which will be ready by the 19th of July, after which we will focus on iOS compatibility that will be ready mid-August.”
Besides app, the drivers can also onboard customers from the road by clicking on an additional booking option. The company plans to set up five private patrol security cars in Bengaluru to deal with drunk customers late at night, and customers who click the SOS panic button on the app