Southeast Asian ride-hailing company, Grab, conducted a trial run of GrabHeli, a Jakarta-based chopper service at the weekend, offering free rides to some of its top customers over the megacity. The company provided these services for free, which could be availed by the 10 million people inhabiting the city to get rides across the metropolis.
It was reported that each helicopter was equipped to carry four passengers with each ride lasting for about twenty minutes. This comes across as a big announcement as Indonesian executives weary of Jakarta’s notorious traffic jams may in future be able to order a helicopter ride with their smartphones through this new service.
Mediko Azwar, Marketing Director, Grab Indonesia revealed that the company was “exploring the possibility” of launching GrabHeli on a commercial basis and a feasibility study was being carried out.
“We see that the public need is there, there are executives who need to move from one point to another in a short period of time,” Azwar added.
The plan is currently in the early stages, and no details have been given out about the potential pricing of the GrabHeli services.
This is not the first time that helicopter services came into being in Jakarta. In 2015, California-based ride-sharing app Uber offered free chopper rides to residents in its so-called UberChopper, n collaboration with PremiAir. But it has yet to roll out the service commercially.
Grab is already giving a tough competition to its rivals in Indonesia, namely Go-Jek and Uber, with its app allowing users to hail rides in private cars or on motorbike taxis. It has now strengthened its position in six countries – Singapore, Indonesia, Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.
Also, the company had recently announced ‘Grab 4 Indonesia’ 2020 master plan, according to which it will invest $700 million in Indonesia over the coming three years. As a part of this, Grab had invested a sum of about $100 million this April to acquire Kudo, an Indonesian O2O (online to offline) ecommerce platform, in an effort to develop Indonesia’s digital economy through the promotion of technology innovation.