Tag Archives: Careem
CAIRO (Reuters) – Egypt’s parliament passed a law on Monday regulating ride-sharing apps Uber and Careem, potentially ending a lawsuit that could shut them down in one of their biggest markets but imposing new fees and data sharing requirements.
Legalising the increasingly popular ride-sharing services became urgent in March when an Egyptian court ordered their suspension after a group of taxi drivers filed a suit, arguing they were illegally using private cars as taxis.
Another court last month stayed that ruling, allowing U.S.-based Uber and its Dubai-based competitor Careem to continue operating while the case is appealed. A higher court is expected to hear the appeal later this week.
Uber has faced regulatory and legal setbacks around the world amid opposition from traditional taxi services. It has been forced to quit several countries, such as Denmark and Hungary.
Uber has said Egypt is its largest market in the Middle East, with 157,000 drivers in 2017 and 4 million users since its launch there in 2014.
The new law stipulates that ride-sharing companies obtain five-year renewable licences for a fee of 30 million Egyptian pounds ($ 1.71 million) and that drivers pay annual fees to obtain special licences to work with the company.
“This is a major step forward for the ride-sharing industry as Egypt becomes one of the first countries in the Middle East to pass progressive regulations,” Uber said in a statement.
“We will continue working with the prime minister and the cabinet in the coming months as the law is finalised, and look forward to continuing to serve the millions of Egyptian riders and drivers that rely on Uber.”
The law also requires the companies to retain user data for 180 days and share it with authorities “on request” and “according to the law,” according to a copy of the law reviewed by Reuters.
An earlier draft of the bill had called for real-time data sharing by the companies, but that prompted some opposition in parliament due to privacy concerns.
The law must now be ratified by President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
Uber said last year it was committed to Egypt despite challenges presented by sweeping economic reforms and record inflation. In October, Uber announced a $ 20 million investment in its new support center in Cairo.
It has had to make deals with local car dealerships to provide its drivers with affordable vehicles and adjust its ride prices to ensure its workers were not hit too hard by inflation.
($ 1 = 17.5900 Egyptian pounds)
Reporting by Nashaat Hamdi, Mahmoud Mourad, and Eric Knecht; Editing by Mark Potter
DUBAI (Reuters) – Middle East ride-hailing app Careem said on Wednesday it had resumed services in the Palestinian city of Ramallah in the Israeli-occupied West Bank after striking a deal with Palestinian transport authorities.
Dubai-based Careem suspended services in Ramallah last November, four months after launching there, at the request of the Palestinian Authority, which exercises limited self-rule in the West Bank.
Careem said in a statement it had agreed with the Palestinian transport ministry for its fares to be the same as metered taxis. It has resumed services only with licensed taxi drivers but plans to later add private cars.
Careem believes its services will remain competitive even with fares the same as for regular taxis. It said the taxi booking and payment services on its app were convenient compared with hailing a cab on the street.
Ride-hailing apps have faced opposition in many markets around the world by making inroads into the traditional taxi industry.
Careem said it had signed up hundreds of drivers in the West Bank, where the Palestinian unemployment rate is high.
The ride-hailing company has raised over $ 500 million and expanded to over 90 cities across 13 countries predominantly in the Middle East since launching in 2012.
Careem started services in the West Bank city of Nablus and in Gaza City this year and said it would continue looking at adding more cities in the tiny Palestinian-ruled enclave.
Careem is a Middle East rival to U.S. company Uber Technologies [UBER.UL], which does not operate in the Palestinian territories.
Reporting by Alexander Cornwell; Editing by Mark Heinrich
DUBAI (Reuters) – Careem, a Middle East competitor to Uber Technologies [UBER.UL], said on Sunday it had acquired RoundMenu and would start trialing food delivery services through the restaurant listing and reservation online platform this month.
The Dubai-based ride hailing firm acquired the website and app for an undisclosed sum.
“Careem will begin testing a delivery capability for RoundMenu customers on a small scale later this month,” it said in a statement to Reuters.
RoundMenu has a presence in 18 cities across nine Arab countries, including Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Egypt, according to its website.
There is demand for delivery services in the Middle East, particularly in the Gulf Arab states where temperatures can soar above 50 degrees in the summer.
Several food delivery companies, including Talabat, Zomato, UberEats, and Deliveroo, are active in the region.
RoundMenu has raised $ 3.1 million in funding since it launched in 2012, the Careem statement said.
Careem said in June it would accelerate expansion plans after raising $ 500 million from investors, including German carmaker Daimler and Saudi Arabia’s Kingdom Holding.
In July, it took a minority stake in an Egyptian start-up that connects commuters with private buses in Cairo.
Reporting by Alexander CornwellEditing by Shri Navaratnam