As individual companies succeed, new startups emerge to sell complementary products. Apple was followed by a fleet of iPhone case and accessory manufacturers.
The rise of Uber and Lyft was no different. New startups have launched to support ride-sharing customers and drivers:
Startups that help drivers sell stuff while they drive
Not every driver is just a driver. Side-hustling drivers are everywhere, using their day job to meet influencers in particular industries or sell products (like jewelry!). Take Uber driver Gavin Escolar, who made $250k+ in 2015:
“It’s a salesman’s dream,” he continues. “I have 10 minutes to make an impression. Would that happen if I went door-to-door? Or if I bought tiny online ads? My way, I get quality time with quality leads. Best of all, I’m being paid as I do it. It’s like Uber is providing a base salary before I make any jewelry sales.”
🍪Cargo lets drivers sell snacks, gum, chargers, and headphones directly in their car from a display case that sits on the center armrest. Most drivers make an extra $100/mo. Hiring for 6+ positions in NY.
📺Vugo places small televisions on the back of headrests. Riders watch ads, and drivers get paid. Hiring an ad sales rep in New York.
🎨Wrapify pays drivers to wrap their cars with advertisements. For every mile driven, drivers get paid a flat fee. Hiring in LA, Seattle, and Chicago.
Startups that help drivers find the best rides
To maximize earnings, drivers must constantly race to parts of the city where they guess the highest paid rides will appear, thanks to in-app surge fares, local events, and the natural flow of the city’s population.
Most drivers also use multiple ride-sharing services, bouncing between apps in search of the highest fares. It’s time-consuming and dangerous, especially while driving.
“Drivers get into this gig looking to make a few hundred bucks a week, but soon realize they have to worry about things like diversifying their income and competition among drivers.” — Harry Campbell, The Rideshare Guy
📊Gridwise tells drivers exactly when to pick up passengers from airports, stadiums, and venues around the city based on their proprietary dataset. Hiring data scientists and engineers in Pittsburgh.
🚦Mystro lets drivers switch between apps effortlessly and filter trips automatically. Hiring a senior designer.
📍FarePilot helps drivers identify where the most profitable rides will appear around the city.
Startups that help drivers manage their finances
Managing finances as an independent contractor can get complicated quickly, especially as drivers switch between different apps and attempt to comply with confusing tax-reporting requirements.
🏥 Stride Health provides healthcare and insurance coverage for the gig economy. Hiring a Director of Design and 8+ more in San Francisco.