Global ride-hailing giant Uber on Thursday launched an electric motorbike service in Kenya, as the company seeks to make its global platform emissions-free by 2040.
Uber’s general manager for sub-Saharan Africa, Kagiso Khaole said the rollout in Kenya will be followed later this year in Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Uganda, Tanzania, and South Africa.
CNBC Africa reports that Uber’s new service in Kenya, called “Electric Boda” will consist of 3,000 bikes within six months.
Africa Hub for Green Energy
Kenya has been at the forefront of leading the continent’s shift towards green energy since it generates more than 90% of its power from renewable sources.
The growth of the electric vehicles market in Africa has been slowed by a lack of adequate electric charging infrastructure and associated equipment.
Kenya’s President William Ruto disclosed recently that he wants to see the number of electric motorbikes on the road increase from the current 2,000 to more than 200,000 by the end of 2024.
Bike Hailing in Nigeria
It remains to be seen how this new electric bike venture by Uber will thrive in Nigeria.
Recall that in 2020, the Lagos State Government banned bike-hailing startups such as Gokada, ORide, and MaxNG from operating in major local government areas within the state.
In response to the ban, these bike-hailing startups pivoted into food delivery services while others have been forced to sell their bikes.
What You Should Know
State Governments in Nigeria have recently made moves to adopt electric vehicle operations.
Oando Clean Energy Limited (OCEL) in partnership with the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority (LAMATA) recently launched electric mass transit buses in the state. The buses will provide a viable, competitive, and environmentally friendly alternative to the current buses.
Also, in response to the effect of fuel subsidy removal, Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun said that the state would provide electric-powered motorbikes to residents.