Fasten, one of several new additions to Austin’s quickly evolving ride-hailing landscape, said Tuesday it is pleased with response from consumers in the two weeks since it began offering service in Austin.
The Boston-based startup says it now has “thousands of drivers" working for it in Austin, and said that more than 80 percent of its users are return customers.
Fasten received approval from the city of Austin to operate as a Transportation Network Company on June 1 following the departure of Uber and Lyft after the failure of Proposition 1, which would have installed new fingerprinting requirements for drivers.
Fasten declined to give more specific data on he number of drivers it has or its ride activity in Austin in the past two weeks, but did say that it continues to add drivers to its network.
“It all starts with drivers. Fasten arrived in Austin to show excellent customer service to drivers and riders alike,” CEO and co-founder Kirill Edvakov said. “Our business model empowered us to onboard thousands of drivers in just a few days.”
Fasten operates in a large swath of the Central Texas region that also includes Georgetown, Leander, Cedar Park, parts of Lago Vista, Lockhart, Kyle and San Marcos, Christoff said.
As of Tuesday, about a half-dozen ride-hailing companies were operating under city-approved Transportation Network Company agreements.
Since Austin voters said not to Proposition 1 last month, the Austin metro area has seen ride-hailing options evolve as more and more players jump into the region's app-based transportation market to take over the business left behind by Uber and Lyft.
For example, a group of area tech and community leaders last week formally launched Austin nonprofit ride-hailing service RideAustin, which will start out with limited downtown-area and airport-area services through an iPhone app.
Other companies that have won approval to operate here include GetMe, Wingz, zTrip, Fare and Fasten, while Central Texas-based ScoopMe has also been vying for approval. A smaller list of those companies can pick up rides at the airport as well, such as Austin-based GetMe and Fare, which was founded in Phoenix.
John Montgomery, CEO of ScoopMe, said he hopes to get ScoopMe operating this month after securing the required insurance..
“The app is pretty much ready to go, with some minor tweaks, we are trying to make the app perfect,” Montgomery said.
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