SINGAPORE – Commuters using ride-hailing app Ryde can book taxis from Trans-Cab through the app’s private-hire booking option from next month.

In addition, the Trans-Cab taxi drivers will be able to take jobs on Ryde’s social carpooling platform, in the first such arrangement of its kind.

Ryde said the partnership between the firms would allow it to have a combined pool of more than 25,000 drivers.

Its fleet – made up of private cars, private hire car and taxis – would be the second largest in Singapore, said Ryde.

Trans-Cab is the second-largest taxi operator in Singapore, behind ComfortDelGro.

In an interview with The Straits Times on Wednesday (Sept 25), Ryde’s founder and chief executive officer Terence Zou said more initiatives are in the pipeline, with the company aiming to establish a 25 per cent market share in the ride-hailing market in the long term.

He said the partnership with Trans-Cab had been in the works for the past two to three months, and necessary clearance has been obtained from the Land Transport Authority.

It is expected to benefit both drivers and commuters.

He said: “With more supply (of drivers) into our platform, the prices will be fairer and will not surge crazily to extremes.

“The drivers can access more jobs and they also can do pooling of passengers.”

The social carpooling option on Ryde, RydePool, is usually used by non-commercial drivers who ferry passengers heading in the same direction.

Fares offered on RydePool and its Grab equivalent, GrabHitch, are lower than normal private-hire rides. This is so as the payments are not meant to exceed the cost and expenses incurred from driving a passenger.

Mr Zou said allowing taxi drivers access to this option would also let them look for trips that would fit their schedules, such as when their shifts end and they are looking to head home.

More partnerships with Trans-Cab can be expected moving forward.

Possible collaborations could come in the form of more innovative features and rental deals, said Mr Zou, although he declined to reveal specific details.

Trans-Cab owner Teo Kiang Ang said: “This opens up new opportunities for us to innovate our services to support our drivers in this rapidly evolving industry.

“It offers better services and increased earning to our drivers and a seamless experience for riders.”

In an interview with ST last month, Mr Teo said Trans-Cab would be venturing into car financing and leasing. He said then that he expects private-hire dealings would make up 10 per cent of Trans-cab’s business by the end of the year.

Ryde’s Mr Zou said the firm will also look to partner with other taxi companies, as it explores avenues for continued growth amid competition from well-financed rivals Grab and Gojek.

He said the firm is currently close to profitability, and aims to get in the black by the end of next year.

While he declined to reveal Ryde’s current market share, he revealed that it is looking to secure a market share of 20 to 25 per cent in the future.

“Things have stabilised a little bit… there are three or four players left, there’s no reason why we can’t take a decent cut of the market share,” added Mr Zou.