A new phone app aims to get drunk drivers home safely while keeping them off the streets. StearClear uses your phone’s GPS to find exactly where you are, and a team of two is dispatched to your location. One of them drives you home in your car. The other follows to pick up the sober driver. The payment (and tipping) can all be taken care of though the app. So far only available in New Jersey, their website indicates they plan on rolling the Designated Driver Service out globally.
I think it’s a great idea and hopes it takes off in a big way. One thing I think may help them is the fact that they are offering franchises and do not intend to run the entire operation in house. For a modest franchise fee of 30K, franchise owners get a block of 70,000 people (around 6 to 12 zip codes’ worth) for their business, get access to the turnkey solution, and keep 80% of the revenue generated. StearClear will provide the infrastructure, including the mobile apps needed to run the business, payroll, tax reporting, compliance issues, HR, liability and insurance. Drivers, who work in teams of two, earn $8/hour while on call and $12/hour while working plus tips. For customers, there’s a $20 flat-rate pickup fee plus $2/mile.
The company says it’s had 450 inquiries about franchises, and the plan is to begin phasing these in at a rate of 2 or 3 per month with the expectation of offering 13 to 50 franchises by April 2013. Unlike other transportation focused start-ups, there’s interest outside of major cities, where cabs, car services and public transportation are prevalent. The first cities StearClear expects to launch in outside of NJ include Boise, Indianapolis, and Salt Lake City.
To keep up with what’s happening at StearClear you can visit their facebook page – http://www.facebook.com/StearClear.
Screedler factoid – this post made me realize I have been miss-spelling stear lately. I remember looking at the word several times thinking to myself I know I am spelling it right.. steeler’s wheel…steering wheel…doh. To late now, that most interesting man in the world just doesn’t know how to spell.