Montreal’s Blaise Transit, Ottawa’s RideShark partner up in transit space

Blaise Transit, a Montreal on-demand transit platform, has inked a partnership with RideShark, an Ottawa-based multimodal Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) firm.

The companies say their tech will enable cities and transit authorities to offer citizens the ability to transfer seamlessly between on-demand transit services and other options like biking, carpooling and fixed-transit.

“It would be the first time this is ever done in Canada and possibly the first time in the world,” Blaise Transit CEO Justin Hunt told us. 

RideShark, Blaise announce partnership

Blaise Transit says its platform enables public transit companies to run at a lower cost with fewer greenhouse gas emissions. 

The startup focuses on-demand transit. Bus routes and schedules are changing constantly in real-time based on where people want to go. Blaise helps cities offer an Uber-like service that works with the buses and bus stops. Blaise works in markets where some public buses don’t follow fixed routes and schedules.

RideShark does Mobility-as-a-Service. In simple terms this means they offer a user-facing app that allows users to plan and pay for multiple different types (or modes) of transit at once. For example, the app offers users their most optimized combos of public transit, biking, ridesharing, carpooling, etc. and allow them to book/pay for it all at once.

This is why they call it a multi-modal platform, because it plans trips between multiple modes of transport, noted Hunt.

Hunt says the partnership is focused on providing mobility options for any type of trip or passenger. Users can request rides while the app optimizes public transit fleet operations in real-time. It’s a “single resource for all their transportation needs.”

Transit operators and agencies, meanwhile, can use the platform to deploy, adjust, and monitor on-demand transit services in their operating region. Blaise says government, transit agencies, and organizations can consolidate outreach into a single platform for trip planning, rideshare matching, active transportation, trip logging, incentive/rewards, vanpools, shuttles, commuter challenges, and parking management.

Blaise was founded in 2018 by CEO Justin Hunt and CTO Ben Hudson. They’ve already gone through Techstars and The Next 36. The company now has 10 employees.

Blaise also announced another partnership with United Manitoulin Island Transit in Ontario to power on-demand transit services across Manitoulin Island, Ontario. The launch will take place on the unceded territory of Wiikwemkoong First Nation and connect to the rest of the island. The pair of companies are calling it the first on-demand transit service on First Nations territory aimed at remedying longstanding transportation issues within reserve and remote communities.

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