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Sydney start-up Jayride is now at nearly 100 US airports thanks to a successful $1.5 million capital raise


Sydney-based transportation booking platform, Jayride recently officially launched in the US, powered by a successful $1.5 million capital raise earlier this year in January.

Backed by angel investment group, Sydney Angels, the award-winning start-up now covers nearly 100 US airports and is expanding rapidly. Current major ground transport companies available to book on the platform include SuperShuttle, Blacklane and Execucar.

“In the past whilst running a different start-up, I needed an aggregate solution for placing bookings with ground transport operators. No such solution existed,” co-founder and CEO Rod Bishop (above) told Anthill about the motivation behind Jayride.

Years later, Rod and his co-founder Ross Lin felt that the time was right, that the market needed one place online where one could find all the different ground transport services.

It turns out they were right!

Since its initial launch of booking systems in Sydney in 2013, Jayride has gone on to establish offices in the UK, New Zealand and the Philippines, and now works with 700 travel agents and 500 transportation companies globally.

It has also been sweeping accolades like Kenyans at a marathon…

Jayride has won a TravelTech Sydney 2014 Startup Award, the Fishburners “Quiet Achiever” award, the SeedStarsWorld’s award for “Best Startup Business in Sydney” and was also a finalist at the WIT Singapore 2014 Startup Awards.

Jayride co-founder Rod Bishop pitching SSW14 Geneva 1
Jayride co-founder Rod Bishop pitching SSW14 Geneva 1

What exactly does Jayride do?

The platform enables its users to book transportation between airports and any hotel or residential address with transportation options including coaches, private cars, executive limousines and other premium vehicles.

It offers the consumer several benefits including its best price guarantee, secure online pre-payment, instant confirmations and the ability to compare multiple quotes.

Furthermore, ground transport has long been a major missed opportunity for travel agents but with Jayride, for every single flight, they can now sell two ground transfers: to, and from, the airport. It therefore offers them the chance to make some extra bucks on every flight they sell.

As far as what separates Jayride from the competitors in its niche, Rod told us, “In travel, ‘destination content’ is a large and growing category. When people travel they want to book ahead the things they need when they arrive at their destination.”

“Travel agencies are responding with brand new offerings but none are specialised for ground transport like Jayride,” he proudly stated.

“We are the ground transport specialists and that’s why we are able to offer better prices, with transfers to more places, than any non-specialty platform.”

How can you build the next Jayride?

On what tech start-up advice he can share from his success so far with Jayride, Rod said, “Set a big vision, build a great team aligned to hit that vision, and then move with your team as fast as you can. Don’t worry too much about your competition, just try to outrun everyone.”

“To help, set up frameworks that let you move quickly, such as decision-making processes, agile development processes, and rapid experimentation and market validation processes,” he added.

“And remember that building product is easy, but working out what product to build is hard. Keep listening to your customers, your users, and your numbers,” Rod concluded. “They will tell you where you need to go next.”