Ola’s India refocus makes sense

In January, Ola outlined a strategy involving an emphasis on premium rides to shore up revenue even as it pushes ahead with a plan to electrify the cabs and two-wheelers that offer its rides.
In January, Ola outlined a strategy involving an emphasis on premium rides to shore up revenue even as it pushes ahead with a plan to electrify the cabs and two-wheelers that offer its rides.

Summary

  • Ride-hailing major Ola Cabs is set to withdraw from its three overseas markets. It plans to focus not on globalization, but electrification, and there’s good reason for it.

Ride-hailing major Ola Cabs is set to withdraw from its three overseas markets of the UK, Australia and New Zealand by month end. As reported, the company has started sending users notifications on the service’s impending closure, with its Australian operations set to cease from 12 April. Ola’s plan is to focus not on globalization, but electrification. 

In January, it outlined a strategy involving an emphasis on premium rides to shore up revenue even as it pushes ahead with a plan to electrify the cabs and two-wheelers that offer its rides. In Delhi and Bengaluru, Ola faces stiff upper-end rivalry from BluSmart’s electric fleet, and it can’t afford to get left behind in customer perception as a leader of mobility. It may therefore have made sense to quit its global ambitions to secure domestic market share. There’s also action at the lower end. 

Like archrival Uber, Ola has launched subscription-based plans for auto-rickshaw drivers, mirroring the model used by Namma Yatri and Rapido, instead of levying booking fees or commissions. This model is found to do a better job of connecting rides with riders. Clearly, there’s much for Ola to learn and do right here in India.

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