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Class project turns into business venture

Wife, expecting mother, Oakland University student, mentor, former NBA performer and Detroiter. All of these roles are owned by Aireal Taylor. But now you can add entrepreneur as well. Taylor is the founder of Kidz Cab, a chauffeured transportation service for children ages 4-16.

Aireal Taylor, Founder and CEO, Kidz Cab

Aireal Taylor, Founder and CEO      Kidz Cab

A Cass Tech alum, Taylor realized the possibility of her business while working on a class assignment in her marketing course at Oakland Community College. She noticed there was a huge opportunity to assist parents with transportation needs in the metropolitan Detroit area. After discussing the idea with her husband,  a United States veteran, Taylor started putting her idea into motion.

Entrepreneurship is continuing to grow in the region and so are the demands of youth activities. As someone with a newly formed three-person household and speaking with a number of friends who need to be at multiple places at once, this is definitely a benefit to many of us.

Yolanda Williams, a wife, mother and fellow entrepreneur as the owner of Cream Blends, sees the need and benefit for such a service. Williams is not the only entrepreneur in the house, so is her husband Rick Williams of Burn Rubber Sneaker Boutique and Distinct Life. Yolanda believes that some parents with multiple children in multiple activities would definitely benefit from a safe, reliable transportation company for extracurricular activities.

Katora Cole, Chief Development Officer at Orchards Children’s Services, wife and mother of four (ages 6 – 17), says, “There was a time when you could rely on a ‘village’ — neighbors and friends to be a part of the network it takes to raise a child. For many parents, those networks no longer exist. Families need options and reliable, safe alternatives to recreate that village in the 21st century.”

Taylor says it was really her experience as a youth that helped to mold her idea. As the business plan evolved, Taylor reflected on her very own childhood and the many activities that not only demanded her and her family’s time, but also their modes of transportation. Growing up on the west side of Detroit near Greenfield and Plymouth, Taylor was consistently active. Not only did she have school, but she needed to be at dance classes, cheerleading practice and violin and clarinet lessons.  In today’s world, children are becoming even busier.

As I mentioned, she wears many hats, but Taylor continues to stay focused on Kidz Cab. I had the pleasure of having Taylor in one of my communication courses at Oakland University. She was shy as she admitted the class was out of her comfort zone. However, whenever she spoke about developing Kidz Cab, the nervousness went away and the confidence of a young Michael Jackson seemed to appear through her. Maybe it came from her performance days. I was amazed and her business plan was far beyond a junior in college. I admit, I was skeptical for a brief moment, but it was her attention to detail and excitement that sparked my interest. It wasn’t until my wife and I became guardians of our niece that I really saw the need for Kidz Cab. Our niece is extremely active and sometimes our own schedules become hectic as well. She recently achieved her 17-year-old independence of receiving her driver’s license, but prior to that, we were struggling in finding ways to transport her to and from school, appointments, gymnastics lessons and cheerleading practice.

As the Founder and CEO, Taylor is truly focused on giving her customers access to “safe, convenient and reliable” transportation services with their most precious cargo – your children. Wondering if this is safe for your child? All Kidz Cab chauffeurs undergo federal background checks, have specific Kidz Cab credentials and wear a company uniform. “We have a full training process and in-house interview process,” says Taylor. “Our chauffeurs are also employees and not independent contractors. We also have fleet technology for parents’ peace of mind with our vehicle tracking map and destination alerts.”

kidz cab

This Saturday, August 1st at Bloomer Park in West Bloomfield, Kidz Cab is hosting its official business launch. There will be food, face painting and giveaways including tickets to see the Detroit Lions, Tigers and Pistons. You can also come and view a Kidz Cab vehicle and possibly win a free Kidz Cab trip.

In class we often spoke about creating goals and making them happen. Our class also spoke about Detroit being the land of opportunity and the place where our goals can be achieved. Reaching your goals and making your dreams a reality is a tremendous accomplishment. But making it happen here in Detroit makes it even better. From one Detroiter to another, congratulations.

Stefen J. Welch
Stefen J. Welch is the Assistant Director, Corporate Philanthropy at Wayne State University. A native of Detroit and believer in the city’s future, Welch is an active community engager and spends much of his time dedicated to various community organizations. An alum of Oakland University, Stefen is also an instructor within the Department of Communication and Journalism. Currently he sits on the Board of Directors at Black Family Development, Inc. and Community Health And Social Services (CHASS). He also holds a Master's in Community Development from the University of Detroit Mercy and is graduate of Leadership Detroit. Follow him @stefenj.