Desperate for jobs, Venezuelan immigrants turn to ride-hailing services across Latin America

TechCrunch | 5/10/2017 | Jonathan Shieber
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Matthew Carpenter-Arévalo is a former Google and Twitter Manager and current CEO of Céntrico Digital, a Latin American based digital agency.

One month ago, Yonathan Segovia, a Cabify driver originally from Venezuela, was allegedly attacked by a mob of taxi drivers on the streets of Quito in Ecuador.

Video - Documents - Aftermath - Assault - Segovia

In the video that documents the aftermath of his alleged assault, a short-of-breath Segovia narrates to his cell phone what happened. Behind him stand a few traffic police and a contingent of semi-formally dressed taxi drivers donning sunglasses and gesticulating to the police. Segovia directs the camera to the broken windshield and claims that he and his vehicle were attacked by xenophobic taxi drivers yelling fuera Cabify (get out Cabify) and regresa a tu país venezolanos (go back to your country, Venezuelans).

Though incidents of violence against drivers of ride-sharing apps are rare in Ecuador, the official taxi syndicate’s rhetoric has intensified as yellow cabs have become increasingly frustrated by what they perceive as government inaction over the encroachment of Uber and Cabify.

Countries - Colombia - Costa - Rica - Taxi

In neighbouring countries such as Colombia and Costa Rica, taxi drivers have attacked ride-sharing app drivers, their cars, and even passengers.

It had only been a few months after Segovia fled Venezuela’s violent streets that one of his brothers was murdered… killed in a case of mistaken identity, according to the young driver. He had come to Quito to escape, and instead found himself in the middle of a pitched battle between local taxi unions and an international ride-sharing company… a battle that had claimed foreign-born Cabify drivers as collateral damage.

Ecuador - Home - Segovia - Number - Countries

Before choosing Ecuador as his new home, Segovia considered a number of countries in the region. To help make his decision he browsed Venezuelan expat groups on Facebook where people exchange information about their experience and ask for help. He considered going to Panama,...
(Excerpt) Read more at: TechCrunch
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