If you haven´t heard about Juno yet, chances are you soon will. Juno wants to beat Uber by wooing its drivers; The new company is said to be rethinking the ridesharing model by giving the drivers ownership in the company.
The New York City startup that is still in stealth mode, is creating industry buzz for its plan to set aside half of its founding stock to give to drivers, according to Shareable. Juno´s plan is to give its drivers equity in the company. On top of that, Juno will take a smaller cut off every ride: Just 10% compared to Uber’s 20% to 25%.
So can treating drivers better give Juno an edge against the $62.5 billion ride-sharing giant?
Talmon Marco, is Juno’s founder and CEO of the messaging app, Viber, which he sold to Rakuten for $900 million. It appears that while Uber has grown globally, many of the drivers aren’t happy.
That is when Juno put together a focus group and talked to more than thirty drivers over a few sessions over a couple of days to see how they felt about the space. According to Pando, Marco said; – We realized (..) Everybody we talked to, they hated Uber with a passion. We talked about our model, and the plan was not even half-baked. But we wanted to give drivers equity and make them true partners. We set up a Google Voice number and started getting calls from drivers about joining our new company. We didn’t even have a company, it was just a focus group. That’s when we thought, “We just have to build it.” There is an opening here. There is something that can be done. And it could be worthy.
Juno is slated to launch in its first market, New York City, this spring. It already has “thousands” of drivers signed up to work with the company. Could one of Uber’s greatest strengths end up being its greatest weakness? Time will tell.