Taxi drivers are refusing to drive Kakao members’ cars, citing declining profits, but Kakao Mobility has denied that its mandatory Kakao T Blue call is a reason for the drop in its member taxi driver numbers.
According to the taxi industry on Sunday, a growing number of taxi drivers refused to drive under a franchise agreement with Kakao T Blue, Kakao Mobility’s premium taxi service with higher call charges. high of 3,000 won ($2.28).
Under the Kakao T Blue service, customers can call taxis faster than usual with higher fares. But for its drivers, it is not easy to find passengers due to the small number of users opting for more expensive journeys.
Drivers choosing the premium option must comply with calls made arbitrarily by the computer system regardless of driving distance.
Last month, 17 drivers left Donggo Taxi, which has been run by Kakao Mobility since 2019 with 85 licenses.
Kakao Mobility denied reducing the taxi number of Kakao T Blue membership. The supply of drivers has constantly changed due to external factors such as oil price increases and government subsidies, but the company has maintained its fleet of taxis with various programs to improve their working conditions,” said a company manager.
Its parent company, Kakao, is considering offloading its more than 10% stake in Kakao Mobility to withdraw as second shareholder due to the endless dispute and bad publicity, while unions are strongly protesting the move.
Kakao plans to organize a separate council with unionized workers to pursue the plan, but his union collects signatures from employees of all affiliated units to oppose Kakao’s plan to sell shares.
Shares of Kakao closed up 3.85% at 72,800 won in Seoul on Monday.
By Kim Jung-seok and Lee Ha-yeon
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business News Korea & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]