Via Shuts Down Ride-Hailing Services to Focus on Public Transit

  • Date: 12/15/2021

On Wednesday Via plans to tell riders in its two existing markets, New York and Washington, that it will stop providing rides starting on Dec. 20. The company had restarted its van service in New York, its biggest market for ride-hailing, in July. Despite improving ridership, the ride-hailing industry has been challenged by persistent driver shortages, and giants like Uber Technologies Inc. and Lyft Inc. have spent millions to lure drivers back on the platform in order to meet demand.

In November, Via raised $130 million from investors who valued the company at $3.3 billion. It’s opting against pouring any more capital into ride-hailing, which accounted for the majority of the startup’s revenue before Covid-19, to focus solely on partnerships with public transit agencies. “Transit technology was our original vision and it’s growing extremely quickly,” said Daniel Ramot, the company’s co-founder and CEO. “It came down to focus and opportunity costs.”

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