Tickengo: Regular People Giving Rides Once in a While

November 23, 2012

9:00 am

San Francisco-based Tickengo is a peer-to-peer collaborative transportation community that easily connects people seeking rides with individual drivers nearby. The company is counting on users loving its service because it’s more affordable than taxi’s and more efficient than public transportation.

Tickengo will face plenty of competition in the transportation arena, but the company hopes users will rely on their neighbors for some of that transportation.

CEO Geoff Mathieux shares insight on his new company, as well as on starting up in Silicon Valley.

Tech Cocktail:  What was the inspiration behind Tickengo?

Mathieux:  “Most cars on the road have empty seats. The taxi industry is inefficient. There exists an opportunity to enable all people with a car to provide rides to neighbors once in a while when it’s convenient for both parties. Passengers can get rides quickly, easily and inexpensively.”

Tech Cocktail:  How do you differentiate Tickengo from the competition?

Mathieux:  “Tickengo is an open platform, which accepts all drivers with driver’s licenses and insurance.  8,000 loyal drivers have signed up so far with hundreds more each week.  Similar to Airbnb, everybody is invited to sign up.  All drivers can have profiles.  Uber and Lyft are competitors, but they are not peer-to-peer, as the drivers there are professionals or at least act like professionals by giving many rides each day.  Our drivers are regular people giving rides once in a while.”

Tech Cocktail:  What is the biggest advantage of starting up in San Francisco?

Mathieux:  “If we had wanted to start a mustard company we would have incorporated in Dijon, France.  But since we are an internet company, we are based here in the Bay Area!”

Tech Cocktail:  Describe a crucial decision you’ve faced. How did you deal with it, and what did you learn from it?

Mathieux:  “We love what we do and see everything we do as part of our journey.  So, from that perspective, every moment and decision is crucial. What we do is crucial for the good of society and that’s what motivates us.”

Tech Cocktail:  What’s one interesting fact about your team or office culture?

Mathieux:  “We are a very global team, and all four co-founders are multilingual! We love having a global culture, even if we are based in Silicon Valley!”

Tickengo was a featured startup at Tech Cocktail’s San Francisco Mixer & Startup Showcase.

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Meg Rayford is a communications consultant based in Northern Virginia. She previously spent two years as the Director of Public Relations for a nonprofit startup, where she learned a lot about providing clean water for impoverished countries, even within the confines of a bootstrapped startup.

She is the editor of Tech Cocktail, and she develops media strategies for companies in Washington, DC and Virginia. You can read her most recent work in the marketing chapter of the upcoming book, “Social Innovation and Impact in Nonprofit Leadership,” which will be published in Spring 2014 by Springer Publishing. Follow her @megkrayford.

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