A new ride service has beat the cost of Uber — it's free.
NoMoCab was created by Raj Singh earlier this fallas an alternative to costly transportation such as Uber. The company offers free transportation by generating its revenue solely through advertisement. Within the month, there will be 1,000 Toyota 4Runners in Philadelphia giving free rides.
There are currently only 50 NoMoCab cars in Philadelphia offering free lifts to 1,000 selected beta users of the app. At this stage, the startup is only advertising itself on these cars to get the word out, but a major advertiser in the form of 626 Vodka has now partnered with NoMoCab. Ten percent of 626’s profits go causes supporting the LGBTQ community. The company has a sponsorship from Toyota, and other interested advertisers include Lipton and Coca-Cola.
Singh said that his startup is different from similar companies such as Carvertise, which advertises on normal cars, in that they have an immersive advertising experience. “It’s a lot different when you’re actually surrounded by the product and the advertisement within the car,” he said. In addition to a free ride, you’re likely to get free samples of products ranging from the newest Coca-Cola product to mini bottles of Vodka.
While cross country rides aren’t an option, anywhere from Front Street in Center City to Penn’s Campus is fair game. Monday through Thursday, the service is available from 8 a.m. to midnight and over the weekend from 8 a.m. to 3 a.m. The company plans to quickly expand to Columbus, Boston, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Miami.
One factor which Singh says attracts advertisers is the ability to target a demographic. Users' profiles on NoMoCab uses information such as occupation, income, gender and age to pair them with advertisers. Drivers are also educated on their brand and trained to converse with passengers about the advertisement.
While disapproving of the cost of Uber, Singh admits, “The model we use is similar, including our background checks on drivers.” Potential drivers’ records are screened and applicants must sit down with Singh himself for final approval.
This isn’t Singh’s first startup, though. He dropped out of Drexel University to create Singh Ventures and Dronecast, a company which uses drones to advertise the skies. He said that the connections he made in previous startups have been invaluable in creating NoMoCab.
Singh said that his ultimate goal is to destroy Uber.
“Forty days in, we have a strong staff in place and 1,000 cars which is an investment of 60 million dollars.”
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