Korean startup Kornatus’ Banban taxi app makes taxi-sharing convenient and safe

Traffic jams are not fun, especially if you have to drive the car yourself and so commuters, the world over prefer to opt for shared taxi rides. However, taxi rides come with their own set of problems such as safety and convenience. Korean mobility startup Kornatus aims to offer a solution to such problems through Banban Taxi, a taxi-sharing app that allows multiple users to share a taxi ride and its fare if they are heading in the same direction.

No bumpy rides with Banban taxi

For commuters, sometimes a heated argument with the driver over fare or destination can cause an unnecessary headache. For Banban taxi app users, the driver cannot engage in the taxi-sharing and fare-splitting process. What’s more, commuters of the same gender only are allowed to share the taxi, thus making it very safe.

The app accepts payments only through preregistered cards, which also solves the issue of handy change. After arriving at the final destination, the driver enters the meter fare into the article app, and the fare will be automatically paid to the card registered in advance when calling.

The app aims to address the chronic shortage of late-night taxis and will be a win-win solution for both riders and drivers. The government allowed the startup to provide a ride-sharing service as a solution for a shortage of cabs at night, partially due to taxis that do not want to carry short-distance riders. The app has added a network of some 1,600 cab drivers since its launch. You can choose from a variety of boarding options, including fare discount options and immediate dispatch options.

The app also splits the seat forward and backward for a safe and comfortable ride experience.  The app matches users whose routes overlap more than 70 percent. Users have to pay around $1.73 in an additional fee to use the service since the fare is split, the total amount still comes to be lower than a single user fare. Upon registration with the app, the driver gets a coupon worth 10,000 won or $8.6, which the company uses as an incentive to gain more and more drivers.

Making strides

Launched in 2018 by Kim Gi-dong, the company has received $1 billion in early-stage round funding from domestic venture capital firms, just before the apps’ official launch.

Investors in the round include VC Thoughts Become Things, as well as Bon Angels and SparkLabs Ventures. Kornatus is headquartered in Pangyo — Korea’s largest startup hub located in Gyeonggi Province. The company says it aims to reach 100,000 users by the end of 2019.

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