The licensed hire vehicles industry is essentially the provision of “for- hire” vehicles on public roads; the industry has 2 main factions: Taxis and Private Hire Vehicles (PHVs).
Taxis are formally defined as cars that are available for immediate hire which can be hailed at the street or taxi ranks, while PHVs (which includes minicab, executive car and chauffeur-driven services) must be booked in advance through an operator.
In recent years, the traditional approaches to hailing a taxi or PHV are slowly being abandoned for the smartphone app approach.
Real-time data of drivers nearby, driver rating and fare estimation are just but a few of the advantages that are offered via hailing transportation through a smartphone app. It is no surprise that there is a gradual migration in how long time PHV operators such as operator Addison Lee who attribute 11% of total bookings through their app, since introducing it in August 2015. With such an approach to hailing transportation being widely available to the public, the industry has become more active and competitive as a result.
With revenue estimated at £1.4 billion a year, the growing demand for private hire as a result of being able to acquire a “ride” more easily, can only result in the value of the industry increasing in the years to come. Statistics from the 2015 UK’s Department of Transport Taxi and PHV report for England have reported a 9.3% increase of both taxi and PHVs present on English streets since 2013, with 69% of the total being represented by PHVs alone.