Emma Irvine, general manager of Amber Cars, and Paul Ragan, CEO of Veezu.

Leeds taxi and private hire firm gears up expansion with A1 Taxis acquisition

Amber Cars, the Leeds-based private hire and taxi company, has acquired A1 Taxis in a five-figure deal.

Following the acquisition, Amber Cars now has a total pool of 860 drivers.

The purchase has been backed by Amber Cars’ parent company, Veezu, and is anticipated to create up to 1,500 extra bookings for the business every week in locations such as Holbeck and Beeston, which are areas of Leeds that Amber hasn’t previously had a strong presence in.

Now, customers of A1 Taxis will benefit from Veezu’s investment into the infrastructure of Amber Cars, which sees the business offer electronic booking methods in the form of a ‘three tap app’, interactive voice response system and through the internet.

Amber Cars also offers customers the option of booking through traditional methods such as over the phone, walk-ins or on account.

Emma Irvine, general manager of Amber Cars, said: “By acquiring A1 Taxis, we have added another 15 experienced drivers to our fleet, who bring with them a wealth of knowledge of areas that Amber Cars hasn’t traditionally worked in day-to-day.

“This means that our new drivers have the opportunity to work across the city, which in turn presents a higher earning potential for them, and will positively impact Amber Cars’ customers as more drivers on the roads enables us to service bookings at quicker speeds.”

Veezu owns five taxi firms across the UK and has a combined fleet of almost 2,500 cars.

Paul Ragan, chief executive officer of Veezu, added: “A1 Taxis has been operating in Leeds for decades, with a loyal client base and experienced drivers operating in the south of the city centre. So by bringing A1 Taxis into the Veezu group, we have further strengthened our business in Leeds by increasing our driver pool and the areas in which we operate.

“Customers of A1 Taxis will now be able to benefit from Veezu’s range of electronic booking methods, which are used by more than 50% of our Leeds customer base - the most popular being our mobile app. In less than a year since launching our app, it is now used by 44% of our customers and we anticipate this figure to increase on the back of us inheriting new customers through A1 Taxis.

“There has been such change in the taxi and private hire sector in the last 12 months, which is forcing firms across the UK to review its operations, from booking methods to pricing structures, in order to compete with new international providers entering the market.

“Through consolidation, our vision is to create regional hubs of taxi firms, and the acquisition of A1 Taxis is another key milestone for Veezu and Amber in our Leeds hub.”

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