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Missouri-based Uber competitor enters market

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Last edited 4:48 p.m., March 11, 2019

A Missouri-based competitor to a bevy of San Francisco-based corporations is launching this spring in the Queen City.

Cape Girardeau-based carGO Technologies LLC, a rival to the likes of Uber, Lyft, DoorDash and Postmates, plans to launch its ride-hailing and delivery services on April 1 in the Springfield market, said Dave Coble, carGO’s southwest Missouri president. Coble leads an office of 10 people currently working out of downtown’s Wilhoit Plaza.

“The thing that sets us apart is the local office and local customer service,” he said. “We have customer service here in Springfield that’s live and watching every aspect of the delivery through the app.”

Similar to Uber, Lyft and taxicab companies, carGO provides rides for customers through an app. It also delivers food, similar to Uber Eats and DoorDash, as well as small packages and alcohol, similar to Postmates.

Coble declined to estimate carGO’s investment to open in Springfield, but he noted media placements and business partnerships are part of the launch strategy. CarGO is planning events during the first week of April, including a ribbon-cutting ceremony, as the app launches.

He said carGO next week will begin recruiting drivers, with plans to hire 50 people initially.

Coble added carGO is currently working to line up restaurant and business partners in Springfield, but he declined to name any that are on board so far. A local resident, Coble’s LinkedIn profile indicates he has past experience with APlus Payroll, Springfield ReManufacturing Corp. and Fox KRBK.

Founded in Cape Girardeau in 2017, carGO has since expanded to Poplar Bluff and southern Illinois, according to its website. Its carGO Rideshare app has more than 5,000 installs on the Google Play store, with more than 10,000 for the carGO Carryout app. The iPhone app store does not list install figures. The company has completed nearly 200,000 deliveries and rides, according to provided materials.

CarGO’s entry into the market follows the Jan. 4 closure of QuikDine.com LLC, which conducted deliveries for restaurants. QuikDine rival Lightning Delivery continues to operate. QuikDine owner Randy Ruggeri late last year filed suit against DoorDash, seeking injunctive relief and $75,000 in Greene County Circuit Court for alleged unfair competition, according to past Springfield Business Journal reporting.

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