Vietnam's top taxi firm cries foul at Grab, Uber again after 8,000 drivers quit

By Phuong Dong   July 21, 2017 | 06:42 am PT
Vietnam's top taxi firm cries foul at Grab, Uber again after 8,000 drivers quit
Vinasun and other taxi cabs on the street of Saigon. Photo by VnExpress/Duy Tran
Such finger-pointing has, however, received little empathy from the pulic, who seem happier with a more cost-effective, reliable service.

Vinasun, the country’s biggest taxi firm, has seen nearly 8,000 of its drivers quit in the first half of this year in the face of dog-eat-dog competition from ride-hailing services.

The company said in a newly released report that its workforce has fallen by nearly half to less than 9,200 this year. Bosses said the business had encountered "harsh” competition from Grab and Uber, the ride-hailing apps that have become popular in major cities such as Hanoi and Saigon since making their entrance three years ago.

Revenue in the second quarter slid to VND810 billion ($35.6 million), the company’s lowest since 2014, pulling its first-half income down more than 15 percent on-year.

Vinasun’s net profit between April and June also fell by nearly half compared with the same period last year, it said.

The company has projected a 34 percent drop in profit this year, and 10.6 percent fall in revenue.

In a bid to combat this rising competition, it plans to launch motorbike taxi services to win more customers.

Vietnam’s top taxi firms have been blaming lost business on app-based ride services that are luring passengers away.

After more than 4,200 of its drivers quit in the first three months of this year, Vinasun also blamed "unhealthy" competition from Uber and Grab. 

Mai Linh, another major taxi firm, has also said they are the reason it lost nearly VND84 billion ($3.7 million) in 2016, the company's worst result in five years.

Such finger-pointing has received little support from the public, with many passengers saying they were already unhappy with poor and unreliable services.

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