Ripe Rides wins over B.C.’s Public Transportation Board

Average number of taxis per 1,000 people

1.08 in Canadian Cities
0.72 in Metro Vancouver
0.43 in the Greater Victoria Area

$53.12 That’s the estimated after-tax cost, assuming no delays, of a 10-km trip with Ripe Rides, Vancouver’s latest–and legal–taxi alternative. After a year of lobbying, bylaw amendments and vehicle shipment delays, the app-based ride company, co-founded by local tech entrepreneur Otis Perrick, has put its 20 Cadillac XTS cars on the road, just in time for the annual holiday taxi crunch (when plenty of partygoers will be happy to pay roughly twice the cost of a cab for a ready drive home). While Uber waits outside the gates and suburban taxis are still restricted by region–which Ripe isn’t–the startup managed to win over B.C.’s Public Transportation Board by arguing, with the backing of SFU and UBC professors, that its new, semi-luxury product will create demand, not compete for it. “I was on the stand for four hours, at the mercy of lawyers from the limo companies, the Vancouver Taxi Association and the suburban taxis,” says Perrick of last year’s hearings. “We were able to prove the economic conditions are changing in Vancouver.”