Kolkata, October 24: Delhi-based radio taxi service Mega Cabs, which currently, has operations in seven cities, is looking to expand, mostly to Tier-II towns. With an investment of 500 crore over the next three years, expansion includes increasing the fleet (of vehicles) of own vehicles too. 200% growth in fleet. According to Kunal Lalani, Founder and Chairman, Mega Cabs, the own fleet would go up by over 200 per cent to 8,000 by 2017 from the existing 3,500. The fleet across the existing cities of Delhi, Kolkata, Amritsar, Ludhiana, Bangalore and Chandigarh will also be increased. The company also follows an aggregated model, that is, partnership with vehicle owners and the number is expected to go up to 15,000 by 2017. At least three new cities, namely Kochi, Visakhapatnam, Agra and Lucknow, are on the radar.
By 2015, we are planning to start operations in Agra. Discussions are on with other State Governments and by 2017 Mega Cabs will be there in 12-odd cities, he told BusinessLine. Mega Cabs, which began operations in 2002 from Delhi is owned by Group Mega and competes with players such as Meru and Easy Cabs. It also has competition from aggregators such as Uber. Expansion, Lalani maintains, will be funded mostly from a combination of own funds and bank loans. According to him, fund infusion from private equity players will be explored in 2017. Break-even, though, he admits, will be possible in 2015.
New offers Considering increased competition, Mega Cabs is consolidating its presence in the mobile space. Moving ahead from on-call services, the company has already made operational its mobile app service allowing customers to book cabs using the same. This apart, it has various discount schemes running and is also in the process of developing a mobile wallet that will allow customers to make payments directly through credit cards. The mobile wallet is likely to be operational by December this year, he said. Reported - October 24, 2014)