It was less than five years ago that Uber launched its cab-hailing app and changed the entire transportation industry. A short while later, GetTaxi (now Gett) and other companies jumped on the bandwagon and today hailing a cab with a wave of a hand or calling a taxi station are two historical habits nearing extinction.
The foundations which sustained a veteran, dated industry like taxi transport were disrupted and a new economy was born in which users consumed services as they pleased, whenever they wanted, with the highest level of transparency. The “on-demand economy” had set its roots earlier, in the television age of VOD, which challenged linear broadcasts, prime time, and nightly line-ups with its on-demand capability allowing viewers to tune in at their convenience and watch whatever show they preferred.
With the extensive experience accumulated by Raanan Cohen as founder and CEO of mobile solutions MobileMax and Lior Sion as CTO of GetTaxi the pair founded Bringg in 2013, initially under the name overvyoo. Bringg aims to expand the technological capabilities of apps like Gett and Uber to any mobile business.
“Uber and GetTaxi did not invent taxis. They added a technological layer and changed the business. Now that change is seeping into other industries,” said CEO Cohen. “In each area where a consumer waits for something we can make a change, whether it’s the Hot cable TV technician that needs to arrive between 2 pm and 4 pm or a scheduled FedEx delivery.
“There are new standards for the consumer experience for 99% of businesses. But we aren’t talking about companies like Google or Amazon we’re looking at businesses that are ‘old school’, those that understand the changes and know they need to catch up.”
Bringg hopes to bring the innovation of On Demand technologies to all businesses without delving deep into technology or developing infrastructure from scratch. “We developed a platform that allows businesses to receive the same capabilities required to manage in an on demand world capabilities for advanced consumer experiences and advanced operational abilities. Instead of investing tens of thousands of dollars into developing their own technology, companies can simply use Bringg,” said Cohen.
“After all, most of the businesses are not pretending to be tech players, those that develop everything in-house. Even a small restaurant that makes deliveries needs these services just like a small taxi station needs an app because it’s the new standard. These capabilities can be used across the board.
“Bringg is that platform and we already have clients in 50 countries. It works with food delivery, e-commerce, at-home medical services, legal marijuana deliveries in the US, and other uses; every day we discover new industries or niche services that are each raking in billions of dollars,” said Cohen.
“We have a US client that delivers gowns for parties and a company that collects laundry from its customers; we have a company that supports US veterans suffering from trauma by providing them a way to contact a therapist on demand. What unites all these services is a waiting client.”
The idea that consumers should not be forced to sit at home for hours waiting for a technician but should be able to track his location and see an ETA similar to watching an Uber or Gett will bring a smile to more than a few faces. “We are helping companies transport their products in the On Demand Age. It doesn’t necessarily mean the shoes you ordered will arrive right away or the technician will arrive on cue. But even if I ordered a delivery for Thursday afternoon, consumers today want the experience to be on demand, they want to see the product making its way, to be able to communicate with the carrier, and to rate the quality of service,” said Cohen.
“Why, if GetTaxi works, can I not track my pizza delivery in real time? There is an inefficiency in this area,” said Sion, explaining that couriers for companies that use Bringg have an app similar to an Uber driver. “There they receive the assignments and the app helps them manage their day to direct to customers, to communicate with them, to receive payment, and accept signatures. The other element is a cloud management system that allows the business to oversee all of this.
“On the consumer side, we do not require installation. The user will receive a message on their phone with a link to track the package after the order is completed. When you press the link, you’re taken to a screen that shows real time ETA, a photo of the courier for personal safety, the option to communicate with the driver or a service center, and the option to leave feedback. When the item is delivered, you can rate the courier and the service.”
Bringg does not operate in Israel; its only domestic client is a moshav which delivers fruits and vegetables from farm to your door. “We are sport and nutrition enthusiasts. Every day in our kitchen you can see all the men cutting salad and there are herbal teas on the shelf. When a moshav resident asked to use our services, it seemed like a natural connection,” said Cohen.
The company has raised $7.5 million so far, with its most recent round of funding closed in December. Its backers include Ituran, the leader in fleet management, an American fund, and private investors. Bringg participated in the initial round of Coca Cola Israel’s startup program Coca Cola Bridge.
The program the only one Coca Cola runs in the world takes companies that have a product and helps them commercialize their technology. “Coca Cola does not invest in the startups and does not take equity, but it does open the door to the Coca Cola world and provides the startups businesses synergies within the company something a startup can rarely achieve on its own,” said Cohen.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on January 14, 2016
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