MOVE IT remains as 3rd player in motorcycle ride-hailing service

Elijah Felice Rosales - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Motorcycle taxi service provider MOVE IT is maintaining its franchise to operate in the segment in spite of the merger it has undertaken with ride-hailing giant Grab Philippines.

MOVE IT chairman Francis Juan said in a statement that the company would remain as the third player in the motorcycle taxi competition after it was acquired by Grab last August.

“There are only three motorcycle taxi companies, Angkas, JoyRide and MOVE IT, and Grab – by acquiring MOVE IT – does not become a fourth player,” Juan said.

According to Juan, it appears that certain groups are trying to prevent the completion of Grab’s buyout of MOVE IT.

He explained that with Grab’s capital, MOVE IT can hire additional riders to bolster its services and even reduce fares, all to the benefit of the riding public.

Even with the merger, however, Juan said MOVE IT will retain its accreditation as a motorcycle taxi service provider.

He added that this accreditation issued by the government stays with MOVE IT no matter who owns the firm.

“If an individual purchases a franchised tricycle of another, the buyer does not become a second franchisee but only the owner of the tricycle,” Juan said.

Grab and MOVE IT entered into a partnership last year that would have let MOVE IT offer rides to Grab subscribers.

However,  the move was contested by numerous groups accusing Grab of doing a backdoor entry in motorcycle taxis.

As such, the technical working group tasked to oversee the motorcycle taxi segment instructed the two parties to call off the partnership.

“The losers then were the riding public. MOVE IT being too small couldn’t compete. If the same unfounded allegations succeed for this time around, the public would again be the losers. There must be competition for services to improve and fares to go down,” Juan said.

Based on estimates, market leader Angkas operates a rider fleet of more than 20,000, while the next player JoyRide PH keeps at least 15,000.

Due to the margin in rider base, Grab decided to buy MOVE IT on the promise that it will infuse the capital to hire additional workers.

Last September, MOVE IT general manager Wayne Jacinto said that the firm has doubled its rider fleet to 2,000 in the first 30 days since Grab acquired it.

Arangkada Riders Alliance, a group of motorcycle taxi riders, asked Congress last Thursday to investigate Grab’s buyout of MOVE IT for supposedly violating the pilot study on two-wheeled vehicles as a form of mass transport.

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