Over the years, Aura has partnered with private security companies to assist drivers when they find themselves in danger. Now, the South African startup has partnered with the E-hailing company, Uber, to supply drivers with a virtual panic button linked to their cell phones. Uber’s partnership with Aura is a great step to protect their drivers.

The said deal has secured an R2 million for Aura from HAVAIC in equity raise that requires R6 million. Cape Town Venture Capital (VC) Company HAVAIC mentioned it has given the first installment of the money to Aura. However, Aura intends to the other part of the money from other equity funds and private investors.

Uber drivers to be granted access to armed response ptotection

From left, Aura CEO Warren Myers and at the right end, Uber Sub-Saharan Africa General Manager, Alon Lits.

According to a Venture Capital company, HAVAIC, Aura has developed an “industry-leading” cloud-based security and safety platform. The platform provides an on-demand geographical variable security response. This response is achieved by collecting a reasonable number of the best independent armed reaction companies in South Africa.

Uber’s partnership with Aura, a technology-based service, aims to allow Uber drivers get connected to the closest private security response vehicle through a nationwide network of security and medical response partners. This partnership saw the light of day since 2016 during a three-month-long pilot of SOS for Johannesburg Uber drivers.

In 2017, Aura provided Uber drivers with a phone number linked to Aura’s central control room. However, Aura has decided to extend it services not limiting them to mere calls but connecting drivers in an emergency situation to the nearest security point.

This latest feature lends some credit to the company for thinking about Uber drivers’ security.

Uber partnership for Uber drivers

According to Uber’s general manager in Sub-Saharan Africa, Alon Lits, this new introduction of technology results from Uber’s philosophy – ‘Uberisation’. This has improved security, thus enabling “driver-partners” to connect with the closest security or medical partner at the touch of a button.

While acknowledging the drop in violent incidents against drivers, Alon Lits believes more of such partnerships will lead to a decrease in these violent incidents on drivers.

With such technology, drivers and passengers in South Africa in years to come will experience little or no violence. At least, that’s what Alon Lits believes.

This venture between Uber and Aura gives hope for a world void of crimes. Nonetheless, to achieve this, there is need for the forces of law and order to implement the technology in their departments. 

How does the new feature function?

According to Aura’s CEO, Warren Myers, if the driver hits the panic button, they will get the information on their system. And when this happens, the closest security vehicle is paired with the driver who is able to see the responder. The responder, on the other hand, gets to see the driver and directs him to them.

He further mentioned that the local security industry has as challenge to access and afford security. According to him, the South African Police does not have the capacity to deal with the current problem. Thus, this comes in to extend a helping hand to the South African police. Moreover, private security companies mainly cover a specific area. They usually abstain from sharing data with other security firms.

Thanks to this new technology, the rate of taxi intimidation will reduce. The Uber and Aura partnership is so far one of the most reassuring means of security for Uber drivers. This giant step between the ride-hailing company, Uber, and Aura startup will pave way for big and small companies to partner for a greater good.

 

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