Hate something, change something
In february 2012, before Uber or any other taxi/ride-sharing apps was succesfull in this part of the world – I wrote this article. I’ve been in contact with several taxi apps since then and was even discussing being part of a new one at some point. I’ve been fascinated by apps that offer you a remote control for things you already do in your day to day life – taxi apps and food ordering apps being the most representative for this category. Every taxi ride I took was a short customer development interview, to learn about the driver, what apps is he using, how does that work for him and so on.
Became friends with Mihai @ Clever Taxi, advised a Bulgarian company – TaxiMe and finally when Uber announced open positions in Romania – last October – I applied for the general manager job. I had to pass a 32 questions test – pressured by a 2h time limit. The test was hard, or it seemed hard to me. Processing RAW data from New York City, data that you saw for the first time – and taking business decisions based on complex filters and reports that I had to pull from that data – all under 2 hours, was overwhelming. I got a cold email telling me that I did not pass the test. I am very curious to see who made it and is now part of Uber Romania – because they just launched.
It will be interesting to watch how they approach the local legal challenges – as art.55 (sanctions) from law no# 38/2004, modified recently – that states that demanding payment for people transportation (without having a taxi license) is a contravention – has just passed the senate and is about to be adopted – from what I managed to find out.
Anyway – it’s clear that UBER is not your average taxi app (just read about surge pricing) and if they are serious about Romania and don’t consider it just a footprint – local market dynamics will change.
See below an infographic with everything you need to know about Uber in Romania. And if you decide to try it out – first ride is on me (if it’s less than 40 lei) – just join using this referral link – http://getlok.al/uber-bucharest.