Published: Friday | May 31, 2019 | 12:12 AM Zyleck Technologies, Inc, an Atlanta-based company founded by Jamaican Dr Michael Treasure and already operating in the United States, has announced the launch in Jamaica of Zypps, a transport network company (TNC) marketplace.
Uber and Lyft, the two leading companies that recently went public for nearly US$100 billion in market cap in the United States, are companies that operate marketplaces in the TNC space. These TNC marketplaces use cloud-based technology and smartphone apps to match riders with drivers that use their private cars to offer taxi-like services.
Zypps was developed by Dr Treasure as part of his PhD research programme, and the Zypps TNC model solves the two biggest problems the leading players in the market are struggling with, which are vehicle utilisation – reducing the unloaded driven and reducing the wait time between rides – and maximising driver earnings at a lower cost base.
The leading players use the same TNC model, which requires a legion of vehicles to be available at any given time and place without regard for the time a driver must wait or how much empty miles a driver must drive in between having a passenger in the vehicle. This approach is very costly and does not guarantee a driver an income above minimum wage.
“Zypps uses a different TNC model based on a scheduling algorithm that is patent-pending and predictive. The scheduling algorithm produces up to 50 per cent reduction in wasted time and miles by filling the driver’s desired work window and geography,” Treasure said.
“Zypps approach in Jamaica will be based on using a subset of thoroughly vetted drivers and vehicles with PPV licences, whether the vehicles are part of Jamaica Union of Travellers Association or other taxi associations. With the significant vehicle utilisation rates achievable by Zypps, the Zypps marketplace in Jamaica will use lower vehicle pools, and drivers will be paid on active work windows a guaranteed minimum of J$850 per hour,” Melissa Anderson, Zyleck’s global director of organisational development and talent management.
Anderson indicated that drivers will not need to sit at the airport, hotel driveways or at the corner of the streets to get rides. Rides will be provided in advance to drivers, and because the Zypps marketplace caters to all types of riders, including tourists and business travellers, as well as include small parcel deliveries, the Zypps marketplace will allow drivers to spend less time on the roads and take home much more money than the current systems afford.
Keith Dixon, chief business development officer of Zyleck, said the benefits to riders in using the Zypps marketplace will be numerous and significant.
“Riders will have the increased peace of mind that drivers operating in the Zypps marketplace will be background-checked and continuously monitored on each ride. This means that riders and/or their families, from afar, may view through GPS tracking the vehicle at any given time throughout an active ride. The cost of the ride will be up front and consistent and will, in most cases, be less expensive than comparable services by others,” Dixon said.
Zypps will be introducing a mobile wallet, where cash will be eliminated from the system, providing greater security for both riders and drivers, as there will be no cash exchanging hands between riders and drivers, and thus thieves will have less incentive to hold up the vehicles operating on the Zypps marketplace,” he added.
Zyleck will be setting up local operations here in Jamaica through its licensee and will bring employment and technology development opportunities to Jamaica as part of its mission for Jamaica. Both riders and drivers may now download the Zypps Apps and Zypps Driver Apps, respectively, in the iOS App and Android Google Play stores and register.
The service will be formally launched in Jamaica on June 15, but riders who register before then will get a 10 per cent discount off their first ride.