SEOUL -- The mobility service wing of South Korea's web service giant Kakao will add a fleet of vans to its smartphone taxi-hailing service in October to provide spacious and comfortable transportation for consumers.
Kakao Mobility said in a statement on Monday that it would add 700 to 800 vehicles such as vans to launch "Venti", a large-sized taxi service, in October. Kakao acquired South Korea's largest taxi franchise Tago, which operates some 4,500 taxis, on September 17 to launch its taxi franchise brand, "Waygo Blue".
According to Kakao Mobility, Venti would use Kia's Carnival and Starex, Hyundai's iconic van model, but its fare system was not disclosed.
Originally, Kakao Mobility had tried to launch a ride-hailing service in December last year, but the service had to be suspended due to strong protests by taxi drivers. The mobility company and taxi industry representatives came to a dramatic settlement in January this year through government-brokered negotiations to allow the operation of Waygo Blue.
Users of Kakao's mobility service can choose to call a normal taxi or a Waygo Blue taxi. Kakao's taxi franchise allows consumers to call taxis without entering their destinations.
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