Contents:

4 min read

    4 min read

    If you’ve ever tried to book group transportation for a lot of people (birthday, bachelor party, family reunion, work retreats, etc.), you probably know how difficult it can be to find reliable transportation. A new company called Swoop seeks to change that difficulty by making it easy to find reliable transportation – and the company partners with drivers in a mutually beneficial relationship. Sound too good to be true? Check out the latest episode where I interview Amir Ghorbani of Swoop.

    If you've ever tried to book group transportation for a lot of people (birthday, bachelor party, family reunion, work retreats, etc.), you probably know how difficult it can be to find reliable transportation. A new company called Swoop seeks to change that difficulty by making it easy to find reliable transportation - and the company partners with drivers in a mutually beneficial relationship. Sound too good to be true? Check out the latest episode where I interview Amir Ghorbani of Swoop.

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    If you’d like to read a transcript of this podcast, please click here.

    Intro

    • If you’ve ever tried to organize a party bus or shuttle for a big group of people, you’ll know how difficult it is to find something reliable and compare your options
    • While Uber and Lyft have revolutionized individual transportation, there’s still a huge market for big group transportation – and that’s where Swoop comes in
    • Today I’m speaking with Amir Ghorbani, the co-founder and CEO of Swoop
    • Swoop’s mission is to provide customers with group transportation that is reliable, affordable and fun.
    • Think about taking a group bus ride to wine country or taking a large family to theme parks
    • Taxes are coming up and don’t forget you can write off mileage as a rideshare driver! I recommend Stride Drive, a free app for Android and iOS that tracks your mileage for free. You can find out more about Stride here.

    Interview with Amir Ghorbani

    • Amir Ghorbani is from LA and comes from a transportation background – his parents owned a transportation company called LAX VIP Limousine
    • He always had a passion for technology, so after spending two years at Deloitte and earning his CPA, he made a leap of faith to pursue his vision and created Swoop
    • Swoop makes it easy, fun and reliable to book group transportation, and has worked with companies like Nike, Twitter, Malibu Wines and more

    Creating Swoop

    • Realized there wasn’t a simple, easy and reliable way to book group travel when he was trying to book group travel with friends
    • Right now, there are a lot of methods to find group transportation: Yelp, Google search – but it’s fragmented and reviews of group transport are scarce
    • Swoop doesn’t own the group transport vehicles, all vehicles are owned by transportation providers
    • The whole industry is fragmented – not 1% of the whole market is owned by a single company in the US

    Swoop Transportation Providers

    • Typical Swoop transportation provider has roughly 5-10 vehicles in their fleet, and most transportation providers specialize (charters, limos, etc.)
    • Group transport providers have to be commercially licensed – small and large group transports are both required to have licensing
    • Swoop initially started as instant book but realized market was for advanced requests of group transportation – but 15-20% of bookings are “instant” meaning same day
    • Drivers are rewarded for being great: many repeat customers will request certain drivers by name and refer their friends
    • Currently finds transportation providers through referrals
    • Transportation providers have liked the partnership: Swoop basically advertises for them and helps them increase their bottom line – benefit for both

    Swoop for Consumers

    • Swoop really wants to make it easy for the customer to choose a vehicle, see what they’re going to get – make the whole experience seamless, somewhat like Uber/Lyft did
    • Swoop Marketplace really allows people to see and choose what type of vehicle they want – pictures, descriptions, etc.
    • Customer feedback is very important to Swoop as they continue to user test and improve

    The Future of Swoop

    • Some challenges: scalability, supply and standards
    • Plan is to grow the company outside of LA, where it is currently based
    • Building out the web app for fully automated booking
    • Has partnered with Malibu Wines (wine tours) and plans continued growth in those areas

    Outro

    • Thank you to Amir for coming on and talking to us about Swoop – I’m always interested in new companies’ origin stories
    • Also another avenue for drivers: had you ever thought about driving for large groups before? So many options out there
    • Don’t forget to check out Stride Drive – a free mileage tracking app that will help you out at tax time!
    • Do you have a story or experience you want to share on this podcast? Reach out to me – always looking for interesting perspectives!
    • Follow me on FacebookTwitter and YouTube and you can always contact me if you have questions – I like to hear from you all!

    Show Notes

    If you’d like to read a transcript of this podcast, please click here.

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    Harry Campbell

    Harry Campbell

    I'm Harry, the owner and founder of The Rideshare Guy Blog and Podcast. I used to be a full-time engineer but now I'm a rideshare blogger! I write about my experience driving for Uber, Lyft, and other services and my goal is to help drivers earn more money by working smarter, not harder.