Toronto ride-sharing startup Facedrive expands to London, Ont.


Facedrive, a Toronto-based peer-to-peer ridesharing service with a focus on C02 emissions reduction, has officially launched in the City of London, Ont.

Facedrive’s model offers drivers 85 to 90 percent of the rideshare fare for all completed rides.

Facedrive aims to offer users a safe and easy way to get around the city through their mobile devices. Facedrive says unlike Uber and Lyft, it is Canadian-made and is also eco-friendly, focusing on vehicle emissions reduction. The app allows customers to request rides in electric and hybrid, as well as gas-powered vehicles, through the Facedrive App.

“Our launch into London is exciting, as we continue to offer fair pricing and ethical business practices to riders and new drivers,” said Sayan Navaratnam, chairman of Facedrive. “Our commitment to safety is paramount, and we employ an extensive driver screening process ensuring that all its drivers are well qualified and well trained before they start driving with the company. For riders, our app is easy to use. Just download, and a few taps will get you a ride plus you’ll be helping the London environment.”

Founded in 2016, the company offers a transportation network that aims to be CO2 emissions neutral. In 2017, the startup launched a feature that estimates the CO2 emissions for each car journey and determines the equivalent monetary value that will be donated to a local charity. The feature was launched in partnership with the Toronto Parks and Tree Foundation.

Since then, the company has entered into a strategic partnership with the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police (OACP), in support of the 2018 Drive Safe Campaign. In early 2018, it also completed a round of undisclosed financing from Malar Group, a Canadian group of corporations which holds an ownership interest in its companies. Other partners include CP24, SRH Foundation, OneEleven, and Telus.

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“Facedrive’s business model was exciting to us, and our group of companies. We seek opportunities around the world that are game-changing, sustainable and positively impact the planet,” Navaratnam said at the time of the investment round, as CEO of Malar Group. “We have plans to deepen the ridesharing experience and taking it globally with some alternative, creative strategies.”

Facedrive is now looking to offer London drivers easy registration and a partnership model where drivers keep 85 percent to 90 percent of the rideshare fare for all completed rides, keep 100 percent of the tip, and have access to 24/7 live support.

The company said it is different from ride-sharing giants through its eco-friendly offering. For every ride fare, Facedrive claims to plant trees locally. It also said it’s prices do not surge depending on demand, unlike some of its competitors.

Image courtesy Unsplash

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle is a Vancouver-based writer with 5+ years of experience in communications and journalism and a lifelong passion for telling stories. For over two years, she has reported on all sides of the Canadian startup ecosystem, from landmark venture deals to public policy, telling the stories of the founders putting Canadian tech on the map.

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