Business Irish

Monday 25 March 2019

mytaxi to go through another rebrand as Daimler launches new venture with BMW

Mytaxi app
Mytaxi app
Louise Kelly

Louise Kelly

Taxi booking app mytaxi is set to go through another rebrand later this year as Daimler launches a new ride-hailing venture with BMW.

Daimler is the majority shareholder of mytaxi, which was previously known in Ireland as Hailo prior to a merger and rebrand early 2017.

The carmarker has now announced a joint ride-hailing, parking and electric car charging business with fellow German giant BMW.

It is expected that the firms will invest more than €1bn to expand the joint venture in a bid to compete with Uber and similar tech firms.

mytaxi said that it will be changing its name to FREE NOW but "there will be no change to the mytaxi service and app" at a unconfirmed date this year.

Users of the app are being advised that there will be no tech changes and no impact on customer data as a result of the merger.

"Your current mytaxi app will become the FREE NOW app later this year with a simple app update. We will let you know via email when the rebrand to FREE NOW is taking place," it said.

mytaxi Ireland said that the rebrand will allow the company to further develop its reach and tech expertise, with plans to expand into rural areas in the pipeline.

The two German brands will both hold 50pc in the new business, which will combine Daimler's Car2Go car-sharing brand with BMW's DriveNow, ParkNow and ChargeNow units.

The five strands of the new venture are REACH NOW, a smartphone-based route management and booking service, CHARGE NOW for electric car charging, PARK NOW for parking services SHARE NOW for car-sharing, and FREE NOW for taxi ride-hailing.

None of these companies - aside from FREE NOW - will be operating in Ireland.

Alan Fox was appointed as mytaxi's general manager for Ireland last March, succeeding Tim Arnold who moved to Renault Nissan.

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