SEOUL, April 5 (Korea Bizwire) — South Korea’s top three mobility platforms, which have focused primarily on taxi hailing and car sharing services, are moving heaven and earth to expand the scope of their offerings.
T Map Mobility Co., a mobility unit under telecom operator SK Telecom Co., is exploring new business opportunities in the airport bus market, in tandem with the resumption of overseas travels.
First, it aims to launch a manned self-driving bus service for the area covering 80 percent of the Jamsil-Incheon International Airport route by the end of this year.
The company recently acquired two airport bus companies Seoul Airport Limousine Corp. and Airport Limousine Co. for 197.9 billion won (US$162 million).
T Map Mobility’s larger rival, Kakao Mobility Corp., plans to launch a self-driving robot delivery service by the end of this year.
After launching into the last mile (the final stage in the process of delivering goods to consumers) logistics market last year, Kakao Mobility aims to reduce the burden of delivery cost for store owners by using delivery robots in apartment complexes and alleys.
It also intends to release a pet taxi designed to allow passengers to ride together with their pets, as well as to expand its electric vehicle charger business within the first half of this year.
SoCar, a car-sharing company, attracted 183.2 billion won in investment from car rental firm Lotte Rental Co. last month and reached an agreement with Hyundai Motor Co. and Hyundai Glovis Co. to jointly develop new ventures in the areas of connected cars and logistics.
In collaboration with Lotte Rental, the startup is expected to make forays into car management services, including sales of secondhand vehicles and car repair and cleaning.
J. S. Shin (firstname.lastname@example.org)