TALLINN - Tallink has announced that it will introduce a fleet of taxis next year in an attempt to provide its passengers with a complete spectrum of services 's from ship to hotel 's and to improve the overall quality of customer service in Tallinn's taxi market, which has a notorious reputation for unscrupulous price-gouging.
Infortar and Tallink, the leading passenger shipping line in the Baltics, have set up a firm, Tallink Takso, which will launch operations in the beginning of next year. The firm will reportedly start with a fleet of 100 taxis.
"The idea of establishing a taxi company first and foremost came from using the services of Tallinn taxis as a client, because the availability and quality of the service has often not met expectations," said Alger Holzmann, CEO of Tallink Takso. "Our aim is to create the best taxi fleet in Tallinn."
Ain Hanschmidt, chairman of Infortar, the largest shareholder in Tallink, said that taxi service was a lucrative business and would continue to be so, according to forecasts. "We can see a very large synergy in the joint organization of the services together with Tallink and our hotels," he added.
Holzmann said all Tallink Takso taxis would look the same and also the taxi drivers would be wearing the same uniform.
Tallink Takso is 51 percent owned by Infortar, 34 percent by the Tallink Group and 15 percent by Holzmann.
Meanwhile, the Port of Tallinn announced that 765,194 passengers passed through its gates, of which 45 percent were Tallink clients.
SuperSeaCat was the second largest carrier for the month, claiming a 13.9 percent (106,601 passengers) share, while Viking Line fell to third place with a 11.7 percent share (89,579).
During the first eight months of 2007 some 4.5 million passengers passed through the port. Of these, some 2.2 million were Tallink passengers.