Easy Taxi refocuses its Asia operation

Taxi-booking app Easy Taxi has ceased operations in Hong Kong, with stiff competition from Alibaba's taxi-booking app Kuaidi Dache (快的) cited as a main reason.

Despite having no operations on the ground, the app is still available for drivers and passengers in Hong Kong, and will continue to be updated.

It is understood that Easy Taxi receives approximately 10,000 orders a day in Hong Kong, but the performance is far from the three year-old Kuaidi Dache, which overs one million taxis in more than 300 cities in China, including Hong Kong.

Meanwhile, the Alibaba-backed application accounts for 54.4% share of the mobile taxi booking market in China as of November 2014, according to Analysys International.

Jianggan Li, regional managing director of Easy Taxi Asia, said a decision to concentrate resources on markets which bring the best return, namely Singapore and Philippines, was part of its strategy in 2015.

"We are launching cashless payment, corporate solutions and a few big partnerships in Singapore and Philippines, so we decided to concentrate our resources," Li said.

Across Asia the Brazilian-based Easy Taxi is most active in Southeast Asia and Korea, with Singapore being its biggest market. The focus on its Singapore team recently led to a restructure, with some job losses.

"We restructured the team in Singapore inline with our 2015 strategy. In fact the review is done on a continuous basis and we adjust the team accordingly."

Last October Blake Larson, managing director of business development for Easy Taxi Asia, left last July to join EasyVan.

He said the company is now in need for more manpower in finance to service increasing corporate base and cashless transactions.

"We are now refocusing on the driver acquisition team to driver servicing as the latter becomes more important with the current base."