Emerald rideshare start-up gaining traction
JAY Edwards is full of business ideas, but had a habit of letting them slip. This time was different.
"It was an idea I had a couple of years ago after being down in Brisbane and using a couple of different rideshare companies," he said.
"I thought about how it would work here and decided I'd get in before the competition."
Mr Edwards and his wife Sally are conducting a five-week test of a ridesharing business in Emerald. They have called the company J-Lo's Rides and its customers are increasing in number.
"We've been running tests since Christmas but we've only been available to the public since last weekend," Mr Edwards said.
"It's been really good. Last weekend I had a whole lot of new customers. If it fails or goes well, I'm just going to push through and see what happens."
Having taken time off working in the mines, Mr Edwards said it took a month to get the business operational with the technical side of the enterprise causing some difficulties.
"Initially the hard part was getting an app," he said.
"We found a company that could develop one for me and we're ironing out bugs to make sure it runs smoothly."
Mr Edwards made it clear he doesn't want to pressure the Emerald taxi market, saying he believes there is work enough for both services and he is responding to different customer demand.
"We're not coming in to try to take anything over," he said.
"We'll see where the market is and where the demand is.
"I'm trying different days and different areas. We're just trying to find our niche.
"And in the end, if it improves the service of everything around town, that's part of business."
After the initial trial, Mr and Mrs Edwards will assess the viability of the business.
At the moment, J-Lo's Rides operates on Friday and Saturday nights.