“KrazyRide is a mobile app that connects travelers with rides. It provides local rides, long-distance rides, and tour services,” said Christian Kotto, 35 year old Founder and Chief Executive of KrazyRide. “I was looking for something unique that would attract attention. I figured people would talk about the name. I had to make an impression and have people talking about it.” KrazyRide seeks to compete with Uber, Lyft, and all other ride share entities.
Chris is originally from Cameroon. “I moved from my country around the age of seven,” he said. “Then I lived in the Netherlands then France then the UK and Switzerland. All that took about 15 years. I ended my teenage years in Europe.” At age 24, he returned to Africa for one year then moved to the USA after his mom urged him to seek educational opportunities abroad. “I moved to the U.S. on January 4, 2004. I remember that day forever man.”
The idea came when Chris missed a bus in San Diego. He pondered about alternatives people could take in such situations. That pondering is what led to KrazyRide. As a tourist himself when he landed, the language barrier and lack of infrastructure offered to tourists was striking. By combining his passion for driving, his entrepreneurial dreams, and a desire to provide transportation alternatives, he created KrazyRide.
His company differentiates itself by giving equal attention to both drivers and riders. “They (Uber) lost the idea on the way,” Chris explained. “They forgot about the drivers. The ride share services now are really focused on the riders and the drivers are paying the price.” He said many drivers left good paying jobs to work for Uber; the company’s cost-cutting initiative seriously impacted drivers’ earnings. “KrazyRide wants everyone to be satisfied with the service,” he insisted. “We want them to feel like part of the community. We set up a system where the driver sets up the price, and the rider can negotiate. Both have a lot to gain by connecting together.”
Here is the company’s logo.
The company’s community-focused outlook is one of its highlights. Drivers have a long-distance driving option which allows them to take riders to other states. Drivers can also gives tours of a particular city for out of town visitors. “We not only want to get people to go where they want to go. We want them to connect with the the driver and build a relationship.” Now, KrazyRide is only available in the USA, but Chris is determined to make his company a world-wide service.
Rejection has been part of Chris’ journey. “Once we started, we had no knowledge of coding or designing websites. We just had a vision.” That vision has given him enough tenacity to endure and persevere onward. He detailed a bad investment: “We took the money we had and invested in somebody, but he didn’t do the job.” Chris continued. “A lot of people doubted us. We got a lot of feedback that wasn’t good when we first started. It was hard, but we always got back to work. It teaches you to push harder.” He noted Beyond Success: Redefining the Meaning of Prosperity as an influential book that motivated him continue persevering despite such adversity.
He had some advice for up and coming entrepreneurs. “The first thing I want to tell aspiring entrepreneurs is be prepared to suffer. Be prepared to fail, but that will only make you stronger. Keep believing in your dream.” Chris wanted to tell others to never give up and utilize the one life that they have. “You can’t live somebody else’s dream when you have a dream of your own.”
Interested individuals can sign up for KrazyRide via the websiteKrazyRide or through the App Store or Google Play
Photo credit: Dreamer Loop