Vancouver: Kater Technologies Inc. announced it has officially put its hat in the ring and applied for a ride-hail license to operate in every region of British Columbia. “We have outlined a number of measures that will offer the much needed service to BC consumers while demonstrating a commitment to the environment, safe transportation of passengers and fair treatment for drivers.” said Kater CEO Scott Larson.
“As one of the last North American areas without ride-hailing, BC has an opportunity to introduce the service that is desperately needed in the right way. Our goal is to serve the escalating consumer demand in British Columbia while mitigating some of the inherent downsides that other jurisdictions have witnessed from incumbent ride hailing providers. Good Corporate Social Responsibility means taking the lead in minimizing congestion, integrating ride hailing with public transit and providing services to those that need wheelchair accessible transportation” added Larson. “As a local business, we want what is best for BC.”
The key measures are:
- Kater will include approximately 250 wheelchair accessible vehicles in its network. All citizens, regardless of circumstance, should have access to ride-hailing and transportation services.
- Kater strongly believes in providing a living wage and fair compensation for drivers. Assuming that the PTB approves our pricing model, our drivers are projected to earn at least $25 for every hour that they are active on the Kater platform.
- Kater will provide additional financial incentives for drivers that operate both accessible and hybrid or electric vehicles.
- Kater is seeking a license to operate not only in the Lower Mainland but throughout the entire province – starting this winter in Metro Vancouver, Victoria, Nanaimo and the Okanagan region and then incrementally expanding to all other regions over the next 12 months.
- Kater is proposing pricing at a minimum of 90% of current taxi rates and a maximum of 200%. This attends to consumer concerns over surge pricing and addresses concerns over equal economic conditions for existing stakeholders.
- In order to encourage drivers not to abandon service in the suburbs during peak hours, which has been a concern in other jurisdictions, Kater will provide location-based pricing and incentives to drivers to maintain suburban service throughout the day.
- To address Local Government concerns over congestion and air pollution, Kater will self-regulate supply and will put no more than 2,000 cars on the road at any given time, until data shows a need for additional vehicles
- Kater intends to integrate other forms of transportation into its service model so as to offer seamless consumer options and guard against a significant diminishment in public transit use.
- Kater will support existing industry participants and offer consumer choice by integrating taxis into its platform.
In addition to applying for ride-hail licenses, Kater has officially integrated the back-end technology required to run a successful Mobility as a Service (MaaS) platform, this will allow users to choose available transport options which best suit their mobility needs.
In the coming days, users will be able to book a Kater car, Kateroke or Kater Spa and, when no Kater vehicles are available, traditional taxis. Taxis available for order through Kater are owned and operated by existing operators and will be available in the Lower Mainland, Victoria and Kelowna during a beta testing phase, to anyone who has downloaded the app.
Larson added, “We are committed to providing Vancouver, and the entirety of British Columbia, with as many mobility options as possible and the integration of MaaS technology, with taxi integration into the Kater app, is the first step towards achieving this goal. The next step will be the integration of traditional ride-hailing service and public transportation options when Provincial regulations come into effect” this fall.”