Indonesia's biggest taxi operator, Blue Bird, has teamed up with homegrown motorcycle taxi ride-hailing application Gojek in an attempt to bolster its services despite clashes during massive protests by drivers working for conventional taxi companies against the application in March.
The two companies have decided to join forces and form a partnership involving technology, payment and promotion to help accelerate the digital revolution in Indonesia and empower passengers.
“The cooperation will enable passengers to hail Blue Bird taxis via the Gojek application. We hope in one or two weeks that we can implement the partnership,” Blue Bird public relations manager Teguh Wijayanto told thejakartapost.com on Monday, adding that no agreement had been signed as yet.
Blue Bird launched owned its own application in 2011, but expects its agreement with Gojek to further support its services nationwide.
Started as application to provide ojek (motorcycle taxis), Gojek has expanded its business to include a variety of services. The latest is Go-Car, in which customers can hail a taxi online, and Go-Tix, which facilitates Gojek customers in buying tickets for art, sports or other events through the Gojek application.
The new features are additions to a variety of services offered by Gojek, such as Go-Busway, Go-Massage and Go-Box and Go-Food.
The cooperation marks a new phase for Blue Bird and Gojek. Thousands of Blue Bird taxi drivers rallied on the streets of Jakarta in March against the growing popularity of application-based transportation services such as Gojek, Uber and Grab, which it claimed were illegal entities. Fights broke out between striking Blue Bird drivers and those who kept working.
Indonesian Transportation Society (MTI) chairman Danang Parikesit lauded the partnership, saying the public would see more such cooperation between conventional and application-based transportation companies.
“The synergy is good as customers can choose between competitive services from providers,” Danang told thejakartapost.com.
Danang further said the government must issue regulations to accommodate rapid developments in the transportation service sector, especially amid the emerging popularity of ride-hailing applications.
Moreover, the competition will encourage conventional land transportation companies to keep up with developments in technology, he added. (rin)